Movie mogul Tyler Perry received the key to the city of New Orleans, Louisiana during the Essence Music Festival at the weekend (05-06Jul08).
The New Orleans native was handed the honour by city Mayor C. Ray Nagin, who insisted the filmmaker/playwright should be very proud of his achievements.
The Mayor said, "You are a native son. This is your city. We are proud of you. We love you, and we wish you the best."
Perry used his honour to urge those visiting New Orleans for the festival to take time to explore the city, which was left devastated by Hurricane Katrina.
He stated, "I grew up in this great city, and if you haven't been here, I encourage you to get out past the smiles of Bourbon Street and the French Quarter. There's another New Orleans, faced with poverty and despair."