The new season of Empire is set to take the show to a whole new level. In an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look, The Hollywood Reporter reveals that along with all the unexpected twists and turns fans have come to expect in the hit drama, season two will feature Chris Rock as a prison cannibal.
According to the report, Fox initially said no to the idea of featuring a cannibal, but Lee Daniels moved forward with the plans, filming a ludicrous scene with Rock sitting down at a table with a plate full of body parts sitting in front of him.
However, after Fox executives learned about the scene, Daniels had to call Rock back in for a re-shoot that was a very watered down version of the dinner scene. For his part in the new season, Rock’s character is an inmate who is behind bars with Lucious.
Despite having to adjust his character, Rock is reportedly very happy about his time working with Daniels on Empire. In fact, Rock hasn’t been the only celebrity interested in joining the show this season, which Ilene Chaiken reveals is a vastly different situation than the first season.
“In the first season, you’re sort of begging people to come and work with you, and we heard a lot of ‘no,'” Chaiken stated. “Then in season two, there were a lot of people who reached out to us and said, ‘Hey, I want to do something.'”
In light of some of the things the new season is set to explore, it is clear that the upcoming season is going to feature just as many surprises as the first. This willingness to push traditional boundaries is one reason why Empire has been such a huge hit.
“He’s going to give you those OMG moments. You’re going to tweet about anything Lee Daniels does because he’s going to keep it outrageous,” Joshua Allen stated.
At the same time, Daniels admits he isn’t sure why the show has been met with so much praise. “I’m surprised the show’s even on the air right now,” he states. “You got me, you got Taraji [P. Henson], and you got Terrence Howard. All three of us are bat***t f—ing crazy.”
Concerning how successful he thinks season two will be, Daniels is cautious at best. “I don’t buy the hype,” he states. “I don’t because the hype told me I was getting [an Oscar] nomination for The Butler. I bought into it for a second, and then I got my feelings hurt. I know what goes up must come down … and I’m prepared for the worst.”
Season 2 of Empire premieres Wednesday, September 23 on FOX.
[Photo courtesy of FOX]