Tyler Maddox Simms is a female writer, director and producer. Her titles can be found on the shelves of select Wal-Mart stores as well as on Netflix, VUDU and Redbox. There aren’t very many women that are doing what she has done. Still, Simms does not care that she’s a part of a male dominated industry, she simply knows what she wants and won’t stop until she accomplishes her goals. She recently released the film, The Power of Love, starring actress Vivica A. Fox, as well as the film, A Christmas Wedding with Miguel Nunez. Take this time to read her interview to become familiar with her because she’s is definitely defying the odds.
Parlé Magazine: You are a writer, director and producer. How did it all begin for you?
Tyler Maddox Simms: I’ve always wanted to do what I’m doing now. The very beginning started a long time ago, even prior to moving to Los Angeles, I loved writing, I loved plays in high school. I just always loved what I do.
Parlé: Which hat did you wear first? Writer, director or producer?
Tyler Maddox Simms: Writer.
Parlé: The industry is male dominated as we already know. What was some of the challenges you had to face along the way?
Tyler Maddox Simms: It’s not even along the way as if I have arrived. It’s a daily struggle. I won’t allow myself to be put into a box. ‘I can’t do this because I’m black, I can’t do that because I’m a woman’. I just go! I’d say to answer that, I think when people accept the male dominated business, that’s when you’ll have a block. I may get more no’s and it may take me longer than my male counterparts but I don’t stop and I don’t accept no!
Parlé: Have you ever come across a situation where you felt as if you weren’t taken seriously because you are a woman?
Tyler Maddox Simms: Oh yeah! I believe I’m scrutinized more because I am. It’s silently though. One thing that can’t be denied is something good and it doesn’t matter who brings it. You can have the best script in the world but if you’re trying to get it to a studio, you need someone to read it. I try to do more always.
Parlé: You recently released, Power of Love, starring Vivica A. Fox. She’s also in your film, A Christmas Wedding. What is it like working with her and is there a specific thing you look for in an actress or actor before you hire?
Tyler Maddox Simms: I like Vivica. She’s one of the most down to earth, talented, just a beautiful person. She brings it. It’s consistent all the time. Not only that, there were some less experienced actors and actresses on the set and Vivica reached out and helped, not in a demeaning way but, the way you’re supposed to reach out to an actress with no experience. That’s how it is working with her. She brings it! Period!
Parlé: Let’s talk about your latest release, A Christmas Wedding. It was released November 5th. There’s an ensemble cast that includes Vivica A. Fox, Miguel Nunez Jr., comic Michael Coylar, and Malik Barnahardt. How did that cast come about?
Tyler Maddox Simms: I worked with all of them before and those parts were just calling their names and I just basically reached out. This particular project is a stage play for DVD and it’s a great story available at Wal-Mart.
Parlé: How does it feel for your work to start out from your computer as its being written to being available in select Wal-Mart stores nationwide as well as On Demand and VUDU. Is it surreal or have you gotten used to it?
Tyler Maddox Simms: I never get used to it. I’m always grateful, always thankful to have this opportunity.
Parlé: What is Tyler Maddox Simms’ ideal movie about and who would be the characters?
Tyler Maddox Simms: That’s a good question. If I had to narrow it down, I don’t know if I could narrow it down.
Parlé: If you decided to step from behind the camera for one of your movies, which one would it be and why? Or is it not written yet?
Tyler Maddox Simms: It would definitely be a Faith-based movie. And, it’s just a matter of time.
Parlé: After it’s all said and done, what do you want to have accomplished with your work?
Tyler Maddox Simms: I want to win an Oscar and not for acting. I want to win an Oscar for directing.
Parlé: Is there anything else you would like everyone to know?
Tyler Maddox Simms: No, not anything off the top of my head. Please support my films and not just for me but people who watch them and enjoy them.