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Oprah & Common Planned For Roles In Season Two Of EMPIRE!

Photo: Twitter

Photo: Twitter

The hottest show on television, Fox’s Empire has been bringing some musical star power to the series along with its phenomenal core cast for season one!  But with the series concluding for now with a two-hour season finale next Wednesday March 18th, of course plans are in the works for season two!

And what do you know?  Confirmed today via an interview with Access Hollywood, Empire creator Lee Daniels confessed, of sorts, to the fact that both Oprah Winfrey and rapper and now Oscar winner, Common will have roles next season on the sudsy hip-hop musical drama series.

Daniels offered up on Oprah, “Yes,” admitting he is writing a part for her and then adding. “Yeah, she’s going to be on it.” Lee also copped to admitting to writing a role for Common, since the musical star had stated previously he would love to appear on the show.  Just what kinds of role Oprah and Common would play is anybody’s guess at this time.

Watch Daniels chat with Access Hollywood after the jump.  Then let us know, what role would you cast Oprah and Common in on Empire? A never-before-seen-member of the Lyon family? A record executive? A former prison mate who spent time with Cookie (Taraji B. Henson) behind bars? Some other kind of role?  Share your thoughts below!

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NO NO NO !!!

Oprah do not enter Empire..
You do not belong in Empire, you do not belong in Empire..
I am p’oed lol .. It is a mistake and will simply hurt Empire..

How will Oprah’s presence on Empire hurt the show?

I’ll share a secret. I don’t watch Empire. I saw the commercials advertising the show and decided then and there that I would not watch it. But because I don’t like what I saw doesn’t mean other people wouldn’t like the show. So I am not familiar with the plot and/or storylines.

If Lee Daniels invited Oprah to do the show, I am sure he thinks she can do a good job in whatever role he wrote for her. It is not like they haven’t worked together before. Lee directed Oprah in The Butler! So he has a good idea of what she can do as an actress.

How did just the commercial made you decide not to watch…im just curious!

I love this show. Wish they would keep Oprah far away from this project. So sick of her and her enormous ego.

What ego? What has Oprah done that causes you to say she has an ego problem?

It seems to me it is an act of humility for Oprah to act on a TV show because the actors have to take direction from the director. If Oprah had an ego problem, I doubt Lee Daniels would have bothered to ask her to be a part of the show because she would have been too much trouble! He would know, having directed her before. So to say Oprah has an ego problem doesn’t make much sense in this context.

An act of humility, Gmbenet? Oprah’s not as relevant as she once was. EMPIRE has the fastest growing ratings in the country right now. There’s nothing humble about being on that show…she wants in! ( not saying I blame her…she loves acting and it’s a hit show) but let’s be real. She’s doing it for Oprah. Personally? Seeing her on that show will break that forth wall for me. Unless she plays herself…that might work if she’s there to interview the family or one if…I cops. Deal with that…

Fourth wall

Ican deal with that.

Here’s my “light bulb moment”, Oprah,
Anytime I see your face endorsing any project, any tv series and any major motion picture, and mostly any novel, I run from the hills from the aforementioned.

What did Oprah do that was so bad?

Agree 100 percent. Too bad for the show.

Have zero desire to see Oprah on EMPIRE…though admittedly she’s a good actress. Just…no.

What is wrong with Oprah being on Empire? Are you mad with her because of the movie Selma? Is that why you don’t want to see her on Empire?

This is weird!

What about Common? Should Should he not be on Empire too? If so, is it because of the song “Glory” and his acceptance speech at the Oscars?

I myself havent seen Selma but i plan to rent it…looks like a beautiful made picture and ive long admired MLK for his fight for equal rights…there have been many movies and documentries on him that was well done too…i have no problems with Oprah on Empire but if someone dislikes her it doesnt make it a racist issue…the color of ones skin doesnt matter to me-its whats inside that counts…do you believe those who dont want OW on Empire are racist-its how it appears in your replies-Kenye West jumps on stage and interupts a grammy winner because Beyonce didnt win in that category-did you ask him if it had anything to do with the winners being white? Just because someone is black and someone isnt a fan doesnt mean they are a racest or hate them for doing Selma or whatever-i dislike but dont hate many celebrities of different colors-white, black ect. simply because im not a fan and it has nothing to do with race-i believe those you question feel the same way and it has nothing to do with ones color. Ive had many friends of different color over the years. Gmbenet-weve never met but if we had we could be best friends or not friends at all and it wouldnt matter what our skin color is-it could be our personalities clash…for just reading your well written comments you do seem like a smart intelligent person-sometimes i like your comments and sometimes i disagree…it doesnt matter if your male or female, black or white, and straight or gay or a vegan or meat lover!!! But not everyone can like everything-its the way of the world!!! Peace!!!

Jimh…I agree with everything you wrote…you put into words exactly what I interpreted from Gmbenet’s questions/comments…but I have something to add to Gmbebet…if anyone posting here didn’t want Oprah because he/she was racist…why would any of us be watching EMPIRE in the first place.

Jimh…I actually DO think Kanye’s incredibly inappropriate, insulting behavior to other artists he deems unworthy of winning is tied in to racism on his part…yes, I that example,mi think it really is. Until and if he pulls the same stunt if black artist wins, that’s the impression I’ve gotten.


Thanks for your reply. I do agree that not everyone who dislikes Oprah feels that way because they are racist. I also agree that not everyone who disagrees with the views of an African-American does so because they are racist. Kanye West’s rude behavior toward Taylor Swift was not necessarily racist either, but it sure was a terrible thing to do to anybody regardless of race.

But in this case involving Oprah there had previously been so much backlash regarding the movie Selma and the events commemorating the Selma March that I did wonder. The backlash had occurred by comments on the website. That’s why I asked the question.

There seemed to be no explanation for the responses I was reading. And please note that I did ask rather than spew accusations of racism. I can accept that opposition to Oprah may be due to something other than racism. I’ve also read here that Oprah has a big ego. I do find that amusing based on everything I have seen from Oprah.

But let me share this for those who may be interested to hear. I think Lee Daniels just wanted to work with Oprah in this project. Period. Why? To have some FUN doing it. That is all! I also believe Oprah said yes for the same reason.

Have you noticed the number of African-American stars who have come on the show as guests or have recurring roles. In that sense, Oprah is just one in the number!

Not to take anything away from the show in any way but when was the làst time you saw a successful Primetime drama with this many African-American actors and producers, writers etc. involved? This is a thrilling time for them as entertainers! Excuse my expression, but “every hog and his brother” (an expression common among African-Americans) is coming on that show and they are having a blast! Oprah is an African-American (obviously) and those other African-American entertainers love and appreciate her for her accomplishments as well as for herself. So the idea of all of them being together on a project such as Empire in their minds is “Yes!”

I am confident that if those same African-American entertainers had read the exact same comments that I read in the same context, they would have asked the same questions too!

By the way, just because I don’t watch Empire (the story is not my “cup of tea”), doesn’t mean I am not aware of what stars are appearing on the show. I do keep abreast with the comings and goings. The premise is just not what I like to watch stories about.

Actually I had a friend that was an audience member of Oprah’s talk show. Seriously, audience members were not allowed to look into her eyes b/c that was a rule. Her ego is way too big. Depending on the year, it matches her waistline. She is full of herself and will add nothing to this show at all.

Wow…is that true? I remember there was a former employee, a female, who said she felt Oprah treated her very badly because she was overweight and treated the thin, attractive female staff better. Saw the interview on either 20/20, 6o
minutes or dateline a few years back…don’t recall which show.

Chris…I can DEFINITELY believe that!!!!! Check this out: A long time ago, a friend of my mom’s had an older sister who (also) was an audience member of Oprah’s talk show. According to my mom’s friend’s older sister, Oprah (1) refused to make any eye contact with anyone sitting in the audience, (2) would not sign any autographs before or after the taping of the show and (3) VERY RUDELY kept barking out orders to the whole and entire staff (especially the cameramen) before and after taping of the show. Chris, as far as I’m concerned, Oprah’s E-G-O is BEYOND RIDICULOUS!!!!! Most of all, Oprah is nothing but a MEDIA-HUNGRY H-O-G who will do ANYTHING to make it all about H-E-R!!!!!! Beyond lame.

Have a good one, Chris. Peace.

So glad Oprah is doing Empire! She’s the most honest beautiful soul I’ve come across in a long time. I admire this women who came from nothing, built herself an EMPIRE, even after facing racism and ugly stereotypes because her skin wasn’t light enough, her body wasn’t small enough and her hair wasn’t long enough. She’s an intelligent woman whose confidence got her where she is today. Love you Oprah, keep doing YOU and never let anyone steal your JOY!

Oprah does not belong on Empire..
Her being mixed in with the awesome cast will just drag it down..
she is NOT the personality for Empire she is Oprah.. no matter what she acts in she is always Oprah..
Reading other sites comments, not many are happy about having her on Empire it will change the atmosphere of Empire having Oprah..
She is well for Selam and the Color Purple but not Empire..
It has nothing to with her ”soul, intelligences, or her looks”.. she will suck big time on matter who she plays she will be Oprah..

A mistake to bring her in..

You have your opinion and I have mine. She’s an ACTRESS and I’m sure she’ll play the part Daniel’s wants her to play and she’ll do great. It’s not her problem that other people can’t separate the difference.

It doesn’t matter either way, but I don’t like stunt casting. If they contribute to the show and the story and can act, okay.

I think Oprah should play Cookie’s tacky sister.

I could care less about Oprah on Empire. Not interested at all.

All soaps daytime, prime time, past and present have use stunt casting in their shows. GH had Liz Taylor; Dynasty had Rock Hudson— I believe AMC had Carol Burnett??? Anyway the point is if Oprah is willing to do it– why wouldn’t they take advantage of it and write her a role. The same with Common- or any big name that would be willing to do it. Empire’s success will renew networks interest in the prime time soap—so I am all for Oprah doing it if it adds to the success of the show and that leads to a new crop of compelling night time serials.

Stunt casting is needed when a show is not doing well.
Empire is not daytime..
Empire has 14.33 million viewers and rising..
Oprah is not needed and she is Ophra no matter what role she plays she is still talk show Oprah..(her acting in movies she is still Ophra)

Empire is raw and new cutting media..
Oprah is an old hasbeen and not for Empire ..

Both DAYTIME and PRIME TIME use stunt casting–and NOT just when the show is doing bad, for example Liz Taylor was on GH when the show was at its prime. So stunt casting can happen anytime—perhaps prime time uses the word special guest star, but it is still stunt casting and all shows do it now and then.

I understand your point. Oprah is a personality and depending on the role it might be hard not to see anyone but Oprah on the screen. However, she is good friends with Lee Daniels and he is going to put on the show, whether you like or not– Oprah will be on this show, but take heart, knowing how busy she is I expect whatever role he writes for her, it would be short live.

LMAO… I personally love the series EMPIRE and they’ve been “stunt casting” all season.

Raven Symone, Mary J. Blige, Naomi Campbell, Courtney Love… The more popular the series gets, the stunt casting will be bigger. Not surprised. And Oprah worked with him before, I’m sure they have a mutual respect, makes sense for her to do the show.

I’m pretty shocked by all the Oprah hate. LOL


Taraji P. Henson Says She Fired Her Entire Team After They Failed to Capitalize on Her Success as ‘Empire’s’ Cookie Lyon

When Fox’s hit primetime soap opera, Empire, hit the air it became a smash hit, especially due to its lead female character, Cookie Lyon, as played by Taraji P. Henson.

The actress played Cookie for all she was worth and the some becoming one of the more original soap and television characters. After all, Cookie went to jail for 17 years before being released, and was the wife of former drug dealer, now music mogul, Lucious Lyon played by Terrence Howard.

Now, Taraji revealed all was not kosher behind the scenes during a sit-down interview for the SAG-AFTRA Foundation (see below). It was there, she revealed that she had to fire her entire PR team and more, because of how they failed to capitalize on her rousing success at the time as Cookie.

Photo: Fox

The moment came about during the Q&A Henson was asked what was the best business decision she ever made.  She swiftly answered: “Firing everybody after Cookie,” adding, “Everybody had to f**ing’ go. Where is my deal? Where’s my commercial? Cookie was at the top of the fashion game. Where is my endorsement? What did you have set up for after this? That’s why you all haven’t seen me in so long. They had nothing set up.”

Empire fans recall that a ‘Cookie’ prequel had been in the works to continue the character after the series was canceled after six seasons, but nothing happened. At the time reports shared, Danny Strong, co-creator of the Empire was said to be co-writing the series, and it would come through Henson’s new production banner.

Taraji explained what went down behind the scenes: “All they wanted was another Cookie show, and I said, ‘I’ll do it, but it has to be right. The people deserve, she’s to beloved for y’all to f**k it up.’ And so, when they didn’t get it right, I was like, ‘Well, that’s it,’ and they had nothing else. ‘You’re all f**ng fired.”

Photo: JPI

Henson added that she felt like she had Stockholm Syndrome from the entire situation, which is defines as a syndrome ‘where hostages sometimes develop a psychological bond with their captors.’ (Think Kevin, Y&R!) The moral of Henson’s story was to make sure the people you pay and who work for you, understand that you are the talent and nothing happens without you including them collecting a paycheck off you.

Henson can currently be seen in the musical version of The Color People in movie theatres everywhere.

Check out her emotional and enlightening conversation with the SAG-AFTRA Foundation below.

Now let us know, do you think Cookie Lyon was one of the best TV characters and should have either been spun off into her own show, or Henson should have appeared in more commercial and endorsement deals given the popularity of the character? Weigh-in via the comment section.

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Jussie Smollett Releases New Rap Single ‘Thank You God’ Speaking On the Injustice of His Court Case

Now that former Empire star, Jussie Smollett (Ex-Jamal Lyon) is out of jail while appealing his conviction for the 2019 Chicago hate crime hoax, in which he was at the epicenter, the singer/actor wasted no time dropping a rap single.

On his Instagram account, Smollett posted a short clip of a new rap song, which speaks about his court case and the injustices brought down upon him by the system.

The track entitled,“Thank You God,” features Smollett rapping lyrics like: “You think I’m stupid enough to kill my reputation?”  He also raps, that there will come a day when he can sit down and talk with his followers.  He gives a mention to “D.L.” who many believe is CNN anchor, Don Lemon, who was originally one of Smollett’s main advocates.

Jussie served 10 days of jail time of his sentence of 150 days before being released . He also has 30 months of probation ahead of him and was ordered to pay $120,106 to the city of Chicago and a $25,000 fine for his actions.

Smollett says any funds raised for “Thank You God” will be donated to the Illinois Innocence Project, Rainbow Push, Secure The Bag Safety.

Check out Jussie’s Instagram post containing the rap below/

Now let us know, what do you think about Smollett releasing this track and still defending his innocence? Comment below.


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‘Empire’ Star, Jussie Smollett, Sentenced to 150 Days In Jail For Fake Hate Crime Attack

Late Thursday, former Empire actor and singer, Jussie Smollett, was sentenced in Chicago more than three months after being found guilty on five felony counts to the alleged 2019 hate crime hoax that made national headlines, and got the actor fired from the former Fox primetime drama series.

In the sentencing, Smollett was sentenced to 150 days starting immediately.  In addition, he received 30 months’ probation, and has to pay the city of Chicago $120,106 in restitution, plus Jussie received an additional $25,000 fine.

Cook County Judge James Linn, who levied the sentence, came down hard in his words on Smollett due his actions noting he was, “selfish, arrogant and narcissistic.”  The judge added, “You wanted to make yourself more famous throwing a national pity party for yourself. You’re just a charlatan, pretending to be the victim of a hate crime.”

Linn went in on Smollett for his ‘performance’ and ‘pure perjury’ when the actor took to the witness stand in his own defense last year.

At the end of his sentencing, Smollett pulled down his mask to speak. He then let everyone in the courtroom know that he feels he is innocent, adding, “Your honor, I respect you and I respect the jury, but I did not do this. And I am not suicidal. And if anything happens to me when I go in there, I did not do it to myself. And you must all know that.”

Just before he was taken into custody, Smollett yelled again that he was innocent and raised a fist in the air as he exited.

Watch the sentencing of Jussie Smollett below, then weigh-in.  Did Smollett get enough of a sentence for his crime? Share your thoughts via the comment section.

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