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Taraji P. Henson On ‘Empire’ Atmosphere Following Jussie Smollett Drama

Taraji P HensonTaraji P Henson

Following the Jussie Smollett arrest last month, the cast of Empire has been caught in the middle of all the drama. Smollett has also been written out of the last two episodes of the show, but Taraji P. Henson says it hasn’t affected morale.

“It’s a great atmosphere,” she told Entertainment Tonight.

Though she wouldn’t dive deeper into the Smollett scandal, the executive producer of the Fox show, Brett Mahoney, has opened up about the scandal.

Mahoney explained the past couple of months have been challenging for everyone involved.

“It’s been an emotional rollercoaster. You have someone in your family who’s going through this, while at the same time, we’re shooting the final episodes of the season, which are also just heightened emotionally,” he shared with Entertainment Weekly.

“So it was a lot to deal with and a lot to go through, but we’re really just focused on finishing strong.”

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He continued, “We’re in our last week of production and I’m really proud of the work we’ve done this season, and hopefully the fans will really engage with these back nine episodes.”

As for the future of Smollett on the show, they are waiting to get more information before they make any final decisions.

“It’s a matter of trusting the process and allowing the legal process to play out and see where it goes from there,” he said.

“And it’s too early to think about what we would have to do if we didn’t have Jussie. We have such a strong ensemble and we have so many stories to tell for all of these fascinating characters that it’s bigger than one character, but it’s too early to think about the show without him.”

Do you think Smollett will be on Empire next season? Let us know what you think!

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