A newly released Empire Season 3 trailer features Mariah Carey holding court at Empire Entertainment in all of her splendor and singing her heart out. Her dazzling duet with Jussie Smollett isn’t the only sneak peek of the R&B diva, whose character Kitty dresses a lot like Mariah, which includes breasts that are also longing to be set free. According to Entertainment Weekly, Kitty is another singer on Empire’s roster making hits with Jamal Lyon, and one has to wonder as she purrs to Lucious, “You’ve always got a trick up your sleeve,” whether Kitty and Cookie are going to get along, or are there going to be problems?
Mariah Carey was brought onto the show by her good friend co-creator of the monster hit, Lee Daniels, and the “Fantasy” singer is just one of the musical celebrities appearing on the Fox drama series. Other musical talents slated to join James Packer’s fiance are French Montana, Birdman, Xzibit, and Kid Cudi.
The anticipation over Mariah Carey’s Empire cameo is matched by the angst over the Season 2 cliffhanger — who dies from the fallout (literally) of Rhonda and Anika’s fight? Taraji P. Henson confirmed to Extra that someone, dies and without saying who or if it is indeed one of the power hungry connivers, quickly went on to talk about Terrence Howard’s new baby, Qirin Love.
In other Empire news, the show is being sued by the inmates at a Chicago-area juvenile detention center, where the show filmed Lucious’s jail scenes from the Season 1 finale and the first two episodes from Season 2. Hundreds of underage inmates at the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center were allegedly locked down and denied access to the recreation yard, the library, and the chapel, in addition to restricting family visits and disrupting classes.
The lawsuit was brought on by two former residents of the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center, identified as T.S. and Q.B., and alleges that large areas of the facility were utilized for filming the show, resulting in hundreds of children being crammed in a dayroom with nothing to do or restricted to their cells, while Empire earned “$750,000 per 30-second advertising spot in Episode 1, and $600,000 per 30-second spot in Episode 2.” The plaintiffs want those profits to be distributed to the approximate 400 detainees who suffered during filming.
Children locked in solitary so that Fox can make millions? Cook County hits new low. Kids demand share of profits. https://t.co/KJYtJfr2NK
— Johnetta Elzie (@Nettaaaaaaaa) August 25, 2016
“The Fox Defendants deliberately encouraged the Government Defendants to
improperly place the JTDC on lockdown during the filming of Empire, for commercial benefit.”
This inconvenience caused “psychological damage,” and according to the 37-page suit, “these actions were rooted in an abuse of power and authority, and were undertaken with the intent to cause, or were in reckless disregard of the probability, that their conduct would cause severe emotional distress to the children housed at the JTDC,” reports Deadline.
This isn’t the first time the show has had to deal with legal issues. Just last week a federal judge rejected a motion by Empire co-creators Danny Strong and Lee Daniels, to dismiss Sophia Eggleston’s lawsuit that alleges Taraji P. Henson’s character Cookie Lyon is based on Eggleton and her 2009 memoir, The Hidden Hand, reports Billboard.
Back in February 2015, Twentieth Century Fox Television was sued by Empire Distribution — a hip-hop record label and publishing company — seeking $8 million over naming rights and trademark dilution. The Hollywood Reporter reports that a California federal judge found that Empire Distribution did not have a federal trademark on “Empire” registered and the judge didn’t believe that anyone was going to confuse the show’s Empire Entertainment with a barely visible record label that at one time represented Sean Paul and Kendrick Lamar earlier in their careers before they went on to bigger labels.
Hopefully, Mariah Carey’s October 5 debut on Empire will appease her legion of fans until Maria’s World, her eight-part docu-series premieres on E! December 4. Season 3 of Empire premieres September 21 on Fox.
[Image via Fox]