Taraji P. Henson’s ‘Empire’ spin-off has been dropped by Fox.
The 50-year-old actress starred as Cookie Lyon in the Fox drama series and was set to get her own spin-off series with the network after the show came to an end in April this year, but the network have now confirmed they are not moving forward with plans to purchase the proposed series.
According to Deadline, Taraji’s spin-off still plans to go ahead, but is now being shopped to other networks, including Hulu and ABC.
The series was announced in July, and Fox said at the time it would focus on Cookie, as well as her husband Lucious Lyon (Terrence Howard), and her kids, Andre, Jamal, and Hakeem Lyon.
When the project was first revealed, no plot details were announced, but it was later confirmed the show would follow Cookie as she “moves to LA and potentially feature some of her other family members”.
‘Empire’ aired for six seasons and focused on Lucious, a hip-hop mogul who battles to choose a successor among his three sons who are battling for control over his multi-million dollar company.
The programme ended abruptly in April after the coronavirus pandemic forced filming to be shut down, meaning the last few episodes were not able to be filmed.
However, writers Lee Daniels and Danny Strong both said they hope that one day they can “give the series its proper conclusion”.
Lee said: “The success of ‘Empire’ and bringing the Lyon family to broadcast television will always be one of the proudest achievements of my career.
“This show is the definition of breaking barriers.
“I think there’s more to do with these characters, and I’m heartbroken we aren’t getting to shoot the finale we wanted at least not yet.
“But you know what they say in television? Stay tuned! To the Empire!”
And Danny added: “We’re so proud of this show and of everything this incredible cast – led by Taraji and Terrence and crew accomplished over six seasons.
“The episode airing on April 21 was never meant to be the series finale, but due to current events it will likely be the last one our fans will see for a while.
“We had an ending for the series planned that we all loved, and hopefully someday we’ll be able to film it and give the series its proper conclusion.
“But we hope everyone tunes in to our last original episode, because the work done by our cast and crew deserves to be seen by the widest audience possible.”