You will be redirected back to your article in seconds
Back to IndieWire

What to Expect in Season 2 of ‘Empire’ (Less Opulence; Spike Lee May Direct, Oprah May Guest-Star, More)

What to Expect in Season 2 of 'Empire' (Less Opulence; Spike Lee May Direct, Oprah May Guest-Star, More)

Some news gems dropped in this Hollywood Reporter profile of Lee Daniels and his mega-hot Fox series, “Empire,” that fans of the primetime soap opera will probably appreciate knowing.

– First, the show is a draw for countless entertainers who want to guest-star in it, as others have this season: “The producers likely will discuss the deluge of requests they’ve received from potential guest stars.” Daniels has even been courting Oprah Winfrey heavily to make an appearance on the series, although she has yet to commit: “‘I tell him: “Lee, it’s not enough that you’ve taken every viewer possible on Wednesday night. Now you want me to leave my own network?”‘ says Winfrey, to which Daniels howls with laughter, ‘I’m wearing her down!'”

– And directors, too want some of the action, like none other than Spike Lee: “Daniels has been most struck by Spike Lee, who he says has reached out about helming an episode. ‘That’s when I realized what a beast Danny and I have created,’ says Daniels.”

– Expect a longer season when season 2 returns next year: “Empire will return with more than the first season’s 12 episodes, though how many more is a topic of much debate.” Apparently co-creator Danny Strong and Daniels disagree on how many episodes. Daniels wants to keep it at 12, while Strong wants more than 12; although likely not the typical 22-episode season TV series tend to follow.

– In terms of what to expect from the writing staff next season, Daniels and company would like to take audiences back to the Lyon family’s more modest beginnings: “He’d like to incorporate more of the poorer-class African-American experience into the storyline. ‘I think we’ve seen the opulence,’ he says, ‘but now we have to go back to where they come from.’

– And to assist with bringing that experience to life, the show’s writing staff is being beefed up with more, shall we say, *color* with talent: “Although the creative team is set to take a break before season two planning begins in earnest, Strong and showrunner Ilene Chaiken have been busy bulking up the writing staff. ‘I wanted to bring in some playwrights because we have these delicious soap turns but we also have very layered character development,’ says Strong, who has been courting emerging African-American talent.”

– And while season 2 isn’t really expected until early 2016, again as a mid-season replacement as it was this season, Fox hasn’t ruled out bringing it back earlier than that, if only for fear of losing impatient audiences, in a very competitive content environment, as other networks beef up their upcoming lineups as well to seemingly attract more black audiences (see my 2015/2016 pilots post): “Also being discussed internally is season two timing, with Madden noting he ‘wouldn’t be surprised’ to see the series come back before midseason.”

– Finally, in reference to the self-fulfilling prophecy that black content doesn’t sell overseas, Fox says that, initially there wasn’t a lot of interest from foreign broadcasters. But once the show’s ratings begun to ramp up from week to week, that initially disinterest very quickly became much interest.

I do wonder if the show’s creators can carry its current momentum into and through a second season. When it does return, will fans be as hungry as they are now, especially with a lot more competition likely on the way (assuming even if only 10% of the 70-something pilots/series I compiled yesterday, do make it to series). I think Fox is probably right to consider bringing the show back earlier than mid-season. But that would mean even less time to put a solid season together.

Read the full piece here.

This Article is related to: Television and tagged ,


Comments

Rose S Freifeld

Hi ! I too love the show and it was playing down here in brazil where i live!
I’m an ex-NYer ( if there is such a thing) and i can’t seem to find it anymore!
Can you please tell me if FOX carries it down here (it used to be on Fox Life – 51) now i don’t know where it is – if it moved to Fox and please tell me thr days and the times!!! Please
Thanks ����

nkululeko sithole

its my favourite show.I love it

nkululeko sithole

its my favourite show.I love it

Ms Cequinat

how I love BL WILSON’s questions since they want to show us how the lyon’s families were before fame then WILSON’S questions are on track. #teamLuciousandCookie

Caleb Cochrane

I live on the UK wher only the first two episodes have been shown but over the past two days I’ve binge watched the first season and agree that this needs to be on regularly.
I understand that it can’t be because it’s a show and not like a soap opera, but it’s definitely one of the best shows on TV. The Walkking Dead and Game of Thrones have matching quality but it’s undeniable that more happens in an episode of Empire than the other two shows giving it a better watching experience.
Can’t wait for season 2.
(Siding with Danny Strong: 100% needs more episodes)

Azsha

Thi is the best show ever I’m ready for season 2������������

Priya

This is one of the mist anticipated shows in the UK and we love it! It’s trailers are shown in the cinemas! Can’t wait for season 2…it has to be this year not 2016 I hope :)

Josie

Honestly this show has such deep flesh ripping and bleeding a little part of everyone, that they can’t help but watch it. It’s content draws the audiences attention with the prickly drops of dew, feeding just enough to keep them hungry and tapping their fingers for at least one more taste. The music is so phenomenal and draw even more than just viewers, it draws pacing ears, some that don’t eve like television but the songs grasped their attention like addicts wait and wanting another fix. The whole combination of sound, music, drama, sadness, relief, understanding and love, made the biggest thief of viewers of all diversities, ages and interest in the longest time.

Gerry fife

Also been a fan since first episode. Would also watch it seven days a week. Matter of fact I have. I have to watch it on hulu. Matter of fact I do. I’ve watched it from pilot to episode12 twice

Young sense

May hakeem be the real child of lucious lyon

Denessa

I SIMPLY LUV THIS SHOW. THEY SHUD HAVE IT RUN ROUND THE CLOCK NEVER STOPPING. IM DISAPPOINTED THAT WE HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL NEXT YR. FOR SEASON 2. But they shud be careful with prolonging the show so far apart. U might looae some of ur audience but the time u start Season 2. But me, I luv it, luv it luv this show. U know u good when the pastor and most of the church members mention it in service. Lol

Nana Agyei Hayford

Please don’t keep too long with the season two (2), am really into this movie and can’t wait to see what happens next. Y’all doing a great job there. Thumbs up.

Faith Zamora

I am a big fan of empire but I think that is to long to wait to find out what happens next.But I am a big fan towards Hakeem /..But I just wish you guys wouldn’t take that long for season 2.I wish it was already here.! But I love yall show foreall lol

Alejandro Gonzalez

Empire should return next year in JANUARY 2016!

Gina

I love this show!! I don’t watch much tv but Empire has me hooked! Please don’t wait too long! I also agree about making it daily, worst thing they ever did was getting rid of soap operas & Empire would be awesome at being one!!

Debra Phelps

I

I love show Empire. It is the greates

Rosa Mitchell

I would like to see when Luscious get out and come back to get all the one who try to take him down. I like to see the early part of how they met and how the got to where the at now, while cookie got lock up. I would like see all of it from begin to the end.

stormi

I love this show personally. Very well reality. So many can relate to this life of struggle n coming from the bottom trying to rise to the top. They are all wonderful actors n actresses. I would love to see it continue sooner than next year. I would n could watch 24/7!! 365

juei

Yep, Keep the episodes at 12 and YES PLEASE take us back to their humble beginnings. I can’t wait!

Chantizzle

This show is exactly what I needed with school I think Wednesdys are a perfect day to show it because it gives me something to look forward to. Also I think bringing the show back next year would be to long of a wait and you would loose your audience but then bringing it back to early would’nt give the show the same fire that it has every week so I think that maybe mid October to early November would be a good time to bring it back.

Breyanna

I absolutely love everything about empire I can’t wait until next season . I feel like the characters that were picked are perfect and should remain the same…. I will most definitely be waiting anxiously for their return!

CC

Well Mr. Anonymous, why do you comment under "Anonymous"? Anyway, if you’re not an African American and are not an avid S&A reader, I understand your curiousity. But most in this neighborhood knows that Fox is not our friend. So I can safely assume they’re trying to tell us that they have us covered. But see, we’ve been hoodwinked and lied to since we landed on these shores, so I’d say to Fox, don’t tell us, show us what you’re working with. And if you haven’t noticed, Mr. Anonymous, this is a Pro-Black blog… and race always matters. Know what I mean?

Anonymous

I adore this show. I look forward to every Wednesday and can’t wait for the season 1 finale and season2!! I do clearly see that the characters in the show are African American, and the show definitely attracts the black audiences, but why constantly mention that fox wants to bring in more of the "black audience" it shouldn’t matter who’s watching it as long as it keeps the amazing reviews! :)

CareyCarey

OKay TroubleMaker, I see where you stand. But check this. I don’t think you were around when a guest writer/avid S&A reader (I believe his name was Thompson) wrote a post asking S&A’s reader how they acquired a taste for and/or passion for movies/film watching. Well, the post received about 30 or so comments, each giving a brief history of who inspired them and how they got their feet wet. With that in mind, I’d love to see a post asking viewers "Why do you watch movies/TV (essentially, what do they receive from the experience?) and who inspired their taste". You know, I watched what my parents watched, consequently, I picked up many of their habits and loves. And since I am from an older generation, I watched a lot of "white" movies (still do) which had excellent actors, great acting and diverse stories. That said, I believe many in this generation are being feed inferior products, but from their perspective they’re, well, it’s cool with them. Anyway, all that to say, based on many of the comments, I am left to wonder what most people are looking for in movies/TV programs, and how they got there? For instance, you don’t like programs like Empire. Why? What pleasure do you receive from watching those movies/TV programs that you prefer. And, what are they (could you name a few? Hey, when you least expect it, you’re elected. Maybe YOU can do a guest post on the subject… "Why do you watch movies and TV programs?" In said post you can share your history, likes and dislikes on movies/TV programs.

Natal jones

I love this show please come with a season 2.

Troublemaker

@CAREYCAREY I only watched it because a friend of mine asked me to watch it. I was going to bail earlier but he convinced me to stick it out because it was only 12 episodes. Like I stated in another thread, I will not be tuning into this hot ghetto hoodrat mess of a series.

davidalexander

All empire pitures

Rocket

The show does have some issues. The writing could be better. There are story lines that are incomplete, etc. But the show is still great entertainment. I hope they can keep it going for season two. I agree with a previous poster about keeping it in the soap format. They need to stay in their lane. Its not high drama. Its not serious social commentary. Its a night time soap. Let it be that and live.

Gaylia Somers

When will season2 begin…I cant wait to long, Im an Empire addict

ChgoSista

There are continuity and back story issues that hopefully, will be worked out/addressed by the time the second season rolls around.

Mel Myers

I don’t like that they pass over so much serious details in individual episodes, like when Cookie accidentally executed the hit on the right hand man high level gangster…what happens now??? There has not been even one more hint of that drama in later episodes, someone’s gotta be looking for her. What about when Anika poisoned El’s drink before the big event? What about Lola’s been Luscious’s daughter, why wouldn’t Luscious even talk about staying in her life? It just seems that every episode some events they focus on to draw viewer attention and interest they just completely disregard in further episodes, I don’t see how this show can continue on long term with vested viewer interest with only twelve episodes. Don’t get me wrong, I love the show, but I think they are kind of all over the place and instead of wasting time with stuff they are just going to leave the audience completely hanging with, I feel they should focus on stuff they can play out more deeply and fully so fans aren’t left with such big gaps and the story isn’t moving SO fast. I also don’t like that Luscious’s ALS is really unbelievable, in most episodes he doesn’t show any signs of having the disease at all, in fact he showed more signs of ALS is earlier shows than later shows. ALS is an extremely debilitating disease and I really don’t like how that is SO overlooked in the show…I get its TV, but overall, its almost TO unrealistic and heading more towards a really rushed super vague soap opera? They need more episodes, for sure, no doubts about it! Overall, I am SO loving the show and have never commented online about anything, I would just like to see the show really ceiling its potential!

ANGEL

Yo when I tell ya this show is hot as hell but to have to wait till next year for a season 2 that sucks…we need to get season 2 back on by at least this summer man…. #EMPIRE #HAKEEM #JAMAL #LUCIOUS #COOKIE #ANDRE BRING SEASON 2 BACK ASAP!!!!

Don't Change Anything

This show is fantastic as it is. It is exactly what it’s supposed to be…a nighttime soap opera. It needs to continue to follow the same formula as ‘Dallas’, ‘Dynasty’, etc. Keep the writing tight (Tambay, you could let prospective writers know how to get in…) and the guest stars reasonable. What we need is more scripted shows for Black people and less of the un-reality variety.

CareyCarey

But TroubleMaker, you’re still watching. **sticking out tongue** Hmmmmmmm… must be the shoes, huh? I mean, you must be working on your thesis, or something like that, right? Heck, I know I wouldn’t spend an hour watching "c$$n Daniels" and the crew if I didn’t enjoy them, unless it was "required" by… you know, required by somebody or some thing that had control of my future. So why do you spend an hour a week mean-muggin’ yo’ TV? I know, you just love talking about C$$NS, buffoons and mammies, so Empire gives you ammunition for your visits and battles here at S&A. :-)

Troublemaker

@Eric Some folks don’t care about any hidden agenda just as long as "we black folks are shown as rich and successful." This show’s foundation was built on sand and there aren’t too many directions in which C00n Daniels can take this show without the storyline going downhill. Lucious already killed somebody by the third or fourth episode. Ex-con and former drug dealer Cookie already put out a hit and she already slept with her former drug dealing criminal ex-husband. The oldest son in the last two episodes just suddenly started to show signs of mental illness and he cheated on his wife by episode 5 or 6. The middle son already went through two different partners and we just found out he was married and had a child who now might be Lucious’ baby. The last son urinated in a restaurant and called out the President. Are Folks really calling this show the new Dynasty or Dallas? Those two shows were churning out 22 episodes for nine and fourteen seasons. This show can’t churn out 22 episodes per season for the next two seasons and still maintain a high audience because where is this storyline going to go that it hasn’t already been before? Homeland had a stronger storyline than this show and I had to stop watching after the end of season three because the storyline went down hill after the end of season two. That show had 12 episodes per season and I couldn’t watch anymore after season 3.

kapolei hawaii

Best show ever!!!!

CareyCarey

Cookie is the sh*t and Empire is THE show, like the best ever to appear in prime time. I didn’t think I’d ever say that, but when I convinced my critical eye that he didn’t have to be on all the freakin’ time, I was able to sit back and enjoy seeing my people in all its glory. Hey, I don’t know about y’all but I’ve seen "Cookies" in my neighborhood. And isn’t it sooooo fkin’ cool to see the script flipped. You know, a family of black folks, rich black folks, calling the shots while the white actors play the blockheads. And the music, come on now… but wait, Tyler Perry, Tyler Perry, he had the formula long before Empire hit. See, Black folks loves them some good music with their drama. Well, that is the definition of melodrama: "a play interspersed with songs and orchestral music accompanying the action" and Empire be killin’ it – MESSY-MELO-DRAMA. Sh*t, got my old ass up in here bobbin’ my head and waving my hands in the air. And don’t get me started on the dialog. I’ve heard the actors are allowed and encouraged to improvise. Well, Taraja has been around. When the moment calls for that "real" sistah to come out, Ms. Henson not only knows what to say, she knows just how to say it. And don’t let her put her walk on. Shiiiiiiit, come on now, she KNOWS how to work that thang. Needless to say, I’m all up in Empire and my lady is too. Listen, aside from the fact that she has always been a Terrence Howard fan (something about his eyes, she says) her nickname is Cookie, really, I sh*t you not. Hey, it’s truly family affair. My sister, my daughter and even my own (and old) momma loves Empire.

Lori McIntosh

PLEASE AND I REPEAT PLEASE DO NOT MAKE US WAIT UNTIL 2016. We love this show and it would be terrible to have to wait !

Miles Ellison

Drip, drop, drip drippity drop…….

Mama Grizzly

It was too good to be true, this is the beginning of the end.

alycia jones

I would definitely love to.see this show become a 5 days a week show. It is me and my husbands favorite show. A show definitely needed on tv.

eric

If only we showed this much excitement for movies and programs that actually have the substance to help move us in a positive direction. Stereotypes like those in Empire are entertaining only when you don’t see the agenda underneath. The SNL Empire spoof hinted at how clueless we are about how we present ourselves to the rest of the world. Wake up people.

Annie Kerzic

This is my favorite show on TV and I’d would watch this five days a week or even seven days a week. Please don’t wait too long to start second season.

BL Wilson

I would love to know more about how Cookie got arrested. Did she do it? I assuming its murder with a 17 year sentence. Who did she murder or is she covering for him? I want to see who actually raised the the boys were there any women involved in their lives like grandmothers or something. I want to know how Cookie met Lucious. I hope all of my questions get answered next year. One more…what was Cookie like in jail? They have to do an orange is the new black episode or two.

Connie manley

I believe this needs to be a 5 day week show ,I love this show.so real

Dankwa Brooks

I’ve been a fan since day one and I think it can hold onto the zeitgeist. Coming back officially before it is time is a HUGE mistake. They can do an interim special or maybe a 2 hour movie or something if anything. Lots of other shows have come out the gate hot and made the audience wait just out of business logistics. Coming back sooner with weak material will hurt worse than anything.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *