Taraji P. Henson’s only been away from the TV world for a short time, and now she’s back -- in a lead role!
Today it was announced that the Oscar-nominated actress joined FOX’s hip-hop pilot ‘Empire.’ Henson will take on the lead female role of Cookie Lyon, ex-wife and former business partner of Lucious Lyon. Cookie’s spent 17 years of hard time in prison for drug dealing and is also described as a “sexy, outrageous, over-the-top force.”
As was announced last week, Terrence Howard will play the charming, savvy and tough-minded Lucious, who is also the head of a hip-hop record label. Ever since growing up on the streets, Lucious is determined to do whatever necessary to take his company, Empire Entertainment, public.
Now that Cookie’s been released from prison for good behavior, it looks like she’ll clash with Lucious over his hip-hop business. She wants what’s hers, especially since her drug money helped support Empire Entertainment.
‘Empire’ comes from ‘Lee Daniels’ The Butler’ scribe Danny Strong and director Lee Daniels. The potential series is said to be a different kind of family drama set in the world of, you guessed it, hip-hop.
In addition to Henson and Howard, Jussie Smollett (‘The Mindy Project’) has been cast as musical prodigy and gay man Jamal Lyon. Since childhood, Jamal’s been rejected and judged by his father, Lucious.
‘Person of Interest’ fans will be glad to see Henson back on the small screen, even if it isn’t on the CBS drama. Spoiler alert: Henson’s character, Detective Joss Carter, was killed earlier this season, which took a toll on fans and the show’s characters.
All I can say is, welcome back, Carter!