Fox picked up the hit drama series “Empire” for a sixth season, and Jussie Smollett, who played Jamal on the series, won’t be a part of it.
Michael Thorn, president of Entertainment for Fox Entertainment, announced the show’s renewal.
“‘Empire’ continues to break barriers with its emotionally powerful storytelling, and it remains a core part of the Fox legacy,” said Thorn. “We want to thank everyone on the show — Taraji, Terrence and the entire cast, as well as Lee, Danny, Brett, Sanaa, Brian, Francie, Dennis and their teams — all of whom have done a tremendous job this season. We know there are so many more stories to tell, and we can’t wait to see what they have in store for season six.”
In a statement issued separately, Fox said: “By mutual agreement, the studio has negotiated an extension to Jussie Smollett’s option for season 6, but at this time there are no plans for the character of Jamal to return to ‘Empire.'” The statement was reported by TMZ.
Fox also released a blurb about this week’s episode, which airs Wednesday, May 1: “Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) gets picked up by AUSA Conway (guest star Alicia Coppola), while Lucious (Terrence Howard) is visited by his past. Becky (Gabourey Sidibe), Hakeem (Bryshere “Yazz” Gray) and Andre (Trai Byers) devise a plan to save Empire by putting on a show with special guests Sevyn Streeter and Ty Dolla $ign. Meanwhile, Andre helps Empire with an assist from the last person the Lyons expect and Cookie may never forgive Lucious for what he’s done, leading up to next week’s heart-stopping finale.”
From Imagine Television in association with 20th Century Fox Television, “Empire” was created by Academy Award nominee Lee Daniels and Emmy Award winner Danny Strong, and is executive-produced by Daniels, Strong, Brian Grazer, Francie Calfo, Sanaa Hamri, Dennis Hammer, Matt Pyken and Diane Ademu-John. Brett Mahoney is executive producer and showrunner for the series.