Jussie Smollett Explains Why the Return of Empire Is All About Family
Naomi Campbell may be one of the world's original top models, but the talented household name proved that’s she’s also a gifted actress as Camilla Marks on Empire. Yes, we’re obsessed with her fur-clad looks and bold attitude—she’s also dating a man significantly younger than her on the show—but it’s the way she dethroned all members of the Lyon bloodline from their own company that left us in shock after the season 2 midseason finale in December.
So how much will Campbell disrupt the plot from her new plush boardroom office? If Jussie Smollett’s words are any indication, it won’t be long before Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) and Lucious (Terrence Howard) are back on their A-game. “You’re gonna see the family piecing ourselves back together,” Smollet, who portrays Jamal Lyon, told InStyle of the return of season 2 back in December. “The Lyon family, we’re so broken, and what you’re gonna see is what happens and the residue, if you will, of what happens when a family is torn apart due to the mom being in prison or the dad being on the road, and really about Cookie and Lucious fixing themselves before they can really fix their family.”
So does that mean there won’t be as many on-stage, head-bopping antics? Not exactly. “We’ll really be diving into the family. There’ll still be drama and the craziness and the great music and stuff like that, but what you’re really gonna see is us as a family, especially Cookie and Lucious, attempting to piece that family back together," he added.
In fact, the show is so deeply rooted in family ties that Smollett took a moment to reflect on his own. "The day that Empire aired, I lost my dad to cancer,” he told us. “I knew exactly from the moment that happened what was really important, and that’s my family. I’ve grown so much as a man, as a human being, as an activist, as an actor, as a vocalist… but all in all, it’s been a phenomenal experience.”
Empire's season 2 returns Wednesday, March 30, at 9 p.m. ET on FOX.