Tyler Perry debunks death hoax: Cassi Davis of ‘House of Payne’ is alive and well

A woman and a man in evening attire hold hands and smile at each other
Cassi Davis, left, and Tyler Perry attend the 40th NAACP Image Awards in 2009.
(Kevin Winter / Getty Images for NAACP)

Tyler Perry has a message, friends: Do not mess with Aunt Bam — or with Cassi Davis, the actor who plays her in the “Madea” franchise.

The actor, who Perry says doesn’t do social media, was the subject of a recent online death hoax, but Perry set the record straight Monday, posting a screen shot of the hoax story on Instagram with “THIS IS A LIE” overlaid on it in big red letters.

The fake report said “Cassie” Davis had succumbed to lung cancer at age 58. (At least it got her age right.)


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“After I’ve gotten several calls from people giving me their condolences and I didn’t know what they were talking about, I was sent this article that’s going around,” Perry wrote in his caption. “I don’t know how she could have died and nobody told me or her. So I called her and asked her was she dead and she said hell no!”

The fact that her first name was misspelled in the headline was one clue that the story was fake news, as was the absence of a source for the “news.” Even the date formatting — year, month, day — was a clue, as the U.S. goes with month-day-year. While the date of the hoax story was given as Feb. 12, Google searches for “Cassi Davis” and “Cassie Davis” spiked Monday evening in North America and South Africa.

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The “Madea” mastermind told whoever started the hoax to “please stop you better be careful when you speak death over a child of God. This woman is loved by millions and you’re hurting a lot of people.”

Perry assured his followers that Davis is fine, “living her best life with no worries, no cares, no social media, and no drama,” and waiting to shoot the next season of “House of Payne.”

But the stars came out to support the debunking. Singer and reality star Tamar Braxton said in comments on the post that she “had a full on panic attack … till I got a text from her.”

“This is so Out of Control Hilarious! I want second dibs on the Pool,” actor Debbie Allen commented.


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Comic Desi Banks joked, “Tyler you asked was she dead when she picked up the phone?”

“House of Payne” co-star Keshia Knight Pulliam posted red hearts in response, while actor Candace Vaughn wrote, “Thank you lord she’s alive.”

“My niece was crying this morning cause she thought aunt bam died,” rapper Young Dro commented. “Ppl need to [stop] spreading stuff like this.”