FOX Officially Announces End of “Empire” Following Jussie Smollett Drama

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Still entrenched in the cloud that was the Jussie Smollett saga, hip-hop drama Empire is about to see it’s final days. Fox Network announced on Monday (May 13) that this next season of the show will, in fact, be it’s last.

Fans will recall that the show, which stars Taraji P. Henson and Terrance Howard, got a whole bunch of unwanted attention when Smollett accused two men of a hate crime as he was walking on the streets of Chicago. In the weeks following, Chicago police accused the Empire actor of staging the attack. Prosecutors ended up eventually dropping all charges.

The news comes not long after FOX announced Smollett would not be returning, but that they were hopeful for the show’s continuation. In a statement to E! News in early May, FOX shared where they stood on the situation with Jussie’s character Jamal. “By mutual agreement, the studio has negotiated an extension to Jussie Smollett’s option for season six, but at this time there are no plans for the character of Jamal to return to Empire,” the statement said.

Smollett is still under contract, but might not return for the final season since he was written out of season 5. Executives wouldn’t say on Monday (May 13) if Smollett’s drama had anything to do with pulling the plug on the show.

Despite all this, network executives say that fans of the show are in for a treat during the show’s remaining days.

“We’re excited to see to this show go out with a bang,” Fox Entertainment’s chief executive, Charlie Collier, said in a conference call with the news media, including the New York Times.

The show will also change time slots during the coming season, moving from Wednesday nights to Tuesday nights.