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Lee Daniels and Fox are gearing up for the premiere of their new show Empire, starring Taraji P. Henson and Terrence Howard, on January 7th.

As always, we’re giving you the scoop on the show direct from the actors’ mouths. I visited the set of Empire last month on a cold December day to chat it up with star Terrence Howard inside Sudan Restaurant in Chicago, where they were filming a scene.

In between his acting duties as Lucious Lyon, the King of Hip-Hop, the Oscar-nominated actor let me pick his brain about his new role. His character is an immensely talented artist, the CEO of Empire Entertainment, and a former street thug whose reign has been unchallenged for years. But all that changes when he learns he has a disease that will render him crippled and incapacitated in a matter of three years. The clock is ticking, and he must groom one of his three sons to take over his crowning achievement, without destroying his already fractured family.

Watch the video interview above and be sure to check out Empire when it debuts on Fox on January 7th.

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