From the outside looking in, the cast of Empire appears to be one big, happy, and SUCCESSFUL family.
However, according to new reports from Daily Mail, there’s as much drama behind off screen as there is on screen — and it’s all Taraji & Terrence’s fault!
via Mail Online:
The insider revealed that Oscar nominees Taraji P.Henson and Terrence Howard have complete control the set. The two stars oversee the scripts and are often making changes as late as the day of taping.
‘They call for re-writes if they don’t like the lines or feel as though another character is getting more camera time than they are,’ says the source. ‘They both have final approval over the script, which often frustrates the other actors because it causes their lines to regularly change.’
Henson and her co-star Grace Gealey (Anika “Boo Boo Kitty” Calhoun) don’t get along on the set. Sources say that Henson has been trying to lose weight and sometimes wears Spanx to cover her ‘tummy pooch.’
Apparently, she’s envious of Gealey’s small waist and the sexy, fitted dresses wardrobe likes to put her in.
‘Taraji hates Grace’s tiny figure and often complains to wardrobe about putting her in outfits sexier than her character’s. She says stuff like, “if you put her a** in anything tighter she won’t be able to breathe,”‘ our source revealed.
Meanwhile, Taraji herself wore a tight-fitting hot pink number at a recent Empire event.
On set, the two actresses stay far, far away from each other. Their real-life tension seems to be captured in their on-camera feud, which ended in a physical fight scene on the season finale.
Howard has had his own issues with co-star Malik Yoba (Vernon Turner), who sources say was killed off in the season finale at Howard’s urging.
‘He never liked working opposite Malik because women just swoon over him. During promotional appearances and public events, women would go crazy over Malik because he’s been a Hollywood stud for a long time.
‘That drove Terrence crazy,’ the source explained.
Yoba was often frustrated that he had limited lines and knew that Howard was responsible for getting his camera time cut short.
Oscar nominee Gabourey Sidibe is also unhappy with her limited storyline on Empire and blames it on Henson favoring Ta’Rhonda Jones, who plays Cookie’s assistant Porsha.
Sidibe, who joined Empire fresh off of American Horror Story, feels she’s regulated to just running down the hall shouting one and two word lines to Howard’s character Lucius.
‘She enjoys working, but feels like she’s grossly under utilized on this show. She made jokes that she’d wish they would kill her off in the finale on the set,’ our source shared.
The awkward tension between the cast was also felt during a TCA panel at the Ace Hotel Theater in Los Angeles on March 13.
Both Henson and Howard had bizarre outbursts while other cast members were answering questions.
Henson made an joke about her extremely long hair weave when Gealy was speaking as resulted in Gealy just rolled her eyes.
When the crowd cheered loudly for Jussie Smollett after one of his answers, Howard ranted about wanting to play the game piccino on a cruise ship.
Hmm…we’re not sure if we totally believe ALL of this. However, we’ve learned that where there’s smoke there’s usually fire.
UPDATE: Jussie Smollett exclusively tells lovebscott.com there’s absolutely no truth to this report.