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Tyler Perry Gives Update on ‘Sister Act 3’ With Whoopi Goldberg

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If you’re one of the many fans awaiting the long-teased threequel in the Sister Act franchise — get excited! ET’s Rachel Smith spoke to Tyler Perry about the progress behind the scenes of Sister Act 3 and what fans can expect coming down the pipeline.

Perry’s involvement in the Sister Act franchise has been a long time coming. Back in November 2018, Whoopi Goldberg appeared on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen alongside Perry, and the celebrated filmmaker suggested a third Sister Act film starring Goldberg and Tiffany Haddish.

What started as a conversation became a reality two years later when Disney announced that Sister Act 3 was in production with Goldberg back as the lead and a producer on the project, and Perry producing as well.

It’s been over three years since that announcement, and even Perry admits that the long wait has gotten to him. 

“I’m a little annoyed with how long this has taken me. It’s taking so long, like I’ve done four movies since we started talking about this,” he tells ET. “When I’m outside producing with — you know, Disney’s a huge, wonderful company, but I really want to get this movie and Whoopi really wants to get this movie.” 

Goldberg has been vocal about her excitement to reprise her role as Deloris Van Cartier and her witness protection alter ego, Sister Mary Clarence. 

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Back in July 2022, Goldberg spoke to ET about the threequel, where she played coy when asked what she could spill about the upcoming film but did gush about revisiting her role and elaborate on how the timing was right. “I’ve been trying to do this for six years,” she said. “I was told no one was interested in this. It takes a minute for people to realize they should take their foot out of their mouth.”

“It’s coming. We gotta shoot it, but it’s happening,” Goldberg added. “You’re never fully happy with a script because one of the things you find is you wanna have the space to make an adjustment if you need to. Sometimes what looks right on paper doesn’t come out of your mouth the right way. You have to move it around a little bit but I’m very hopeful people will be happy.”

The View host has even talked about getting an eclectic group of stars together for the cast, including Lizzo and Keke Palmer, the latter who has made her feelings on being cast very clear

She’s even recruiting OG franchise stars to return for the third film! 

Earlier this month, when Sheryl Lee Ralph — who played Florence Watson in 1993’s Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit — visited The View to promote the third season of Abbott Elementary, Goldberg surprised the star by asking her to potentially star in the third film. 

She also asked the Emmy winner to return to the show for an upcoming Sister Act cast reunion thrown by the show’s producers. 

“Something that’s gonna happen here in order to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Sister Act 2, the producers here at The View are working on putting together a reunion,” Goldberg told Ralph after the show aired a scene from the second film. “And we’re gonna try to get as many cast members on to share memories from the movie. Would you do us the honor of coming back? And as soon as we know when it is, we’ll do that.”

Ralph responded that she “would love to” return for a cast reunion soon, and when Goldberg threw out the pitch for the SAG Award winner to also join Sister Act 3, she emotionally reacted to that as well.

But, as much as Perry and Goldberg would love to jump into production, the filmmaker confesses that it takes a lot of work to ensure all the cogs in the machine are the right parts. “Well, just making sure we have the right writers, the right script, the right story, (and) all of those things are so important because it’s such an important, iconic film. We want to make sure we do it justice and do it well, so we’re willing to wait for the right script,” he tells ET. 

On the plus side, after a few false starts, Perry shares that the team “finally got a great pitch.”

“(We got) a great story we’re working on that Whoopi’s excited about, I’m excited about, the director’s excited about, (and) so Disney’s excited about,” he adds. “So we’re working on getting that done. Once that’s done, we’re rolling!”

Until then, fans can get their fill of Perry’s productions with his latest offering, the Kelly Rowland-led Mea Culpa

Mea Culpa tells the story of criminal defense attorney Mea Harper (Rowland), who takes on the murder case against Zyair Malloy (Trevante Rhodes), an artist accused of killing his girlfriend. As she tries to figure out if her cagey and seductive client is as innocent as he claims, Mea gets thrust into a world that’s both hot and dangerous.

In addition to Perry, producers of the film include Dianne Ashford, Will Areu, Angi Bones, and Rowland. Sean Sagar, Nick Sagar, RonReaco Lee and Shannon Thornton also star.

The project was a special one for the filmmaker, who previously shared that he and his mother used to sit down and watch thrillers together.

“Oh gosh, she would love (the movie). She would so love it, she’d be talking to the screen cussing, ‘You can’t all do that,'” Perry says fondly. “Those are things she used to do back in the day.”

When it comes to his leading stars, Perry can’t help but gush about their ability, especially Rowland. He quips that the star’s “biggest struggle” was the fight scenes because “she’s never been in a fight her entire life.” 

“There would come the times she was fighting, I was like, ‘Girl, you don’t know how –?’ (and) she’s like, ‘I’ve never been in a fight!’ You grew up in Houston, and you can’t fight?” Perry recalls, laughing. “But making her a producer on the movie really helped her to have a level of comfort because she had a level of power in what she could do. So when we started talking about the characters and what we’re going to do and how we’re going to do it, she always had incredible ideas.”

It’s clear that the admiration is mutual; when ET spoke with Rowland ahead of the film’s premiere, she gushed about working with the director for the first time.

“I was floored, one, with how focused he was and how he saw things in his brain before they happened. So I watched him assess the space and know where to go. His energy and how he maneuvers through a space in a scene is like… I just want to be a fly on the wall, just to know what he’s thinking,” she shared.  “I just love him. His Virgo qualities are just too strong not to love. And I love that he trusts his instincts.”

Mea Culpa premieres on Netflix Feb. 23. 

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