Thursday, May 8, 2014

Fox Orders Lee Daniels' Hip-Hop Drama, Empire

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox has picked up hip-hop drama Empire Written and exec produced by The Butler's Lee Daniels and Danny Strong, Empire is a family drama set in the world of a hip-hop empire. Taraji P. Henson stars as Cookie Lyon, the ex-wife of Lucious Lyon (Terrence Howard), the head of a record label at the center of the drama.  Strong and Daniels penned the script for Empire, while Daniels will make his TV directing debut with the project. From 20th Century Fox TV and Imagine, Brian Grazer will executive produce alongside Daniels, Strong and Francie Calfo.  Gabby Sidibe co-stars alongside regulars Jussie Smollett, Malik Yoba, Kaitlin Doubleday, Trai Byers, Grace Gealey and Tasha Smith. The drama will feature original and current music, with Timbaland on board as a songwriter/music producer.  The drama had been generating solid buzz throughout pilot season, with the additional revenue streams to come from the original music sales, likely also contributing to the network's decision to pick up the drama. Fox picked up the drama after a multiple-network bidding war, ordering Empire to pilot with an eye toward series pickup under its new development model.

Sidebar: Check out our interview with Taraji P. Henson on the red carpet of her 'From The Rough' movie premiere. We also saw Lee Daniels there. Check out our fan encounters after the interview below.

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