Posted by | Ray Cornelius

ESSENCE is reporting that veteran actor Malik Yoba will co-star alongside Taraji P. Henson and Terrence Howard in Lee Daniels’ new hip-hop drama pilot, Empire.

As previously reported, Empire  is set in the world of a family-run-hip-hop dynasty much like the real lives of rap moguls Jay Z, Diddy and Russell Simmons. Howard is tapped to play Lucius Lyons, a businessman on the rise that is about to take his record company, Empire Entertainment, public.

Yoba will play Vernon Turner, Lyons’ old friend and now business associate. Henson is slated to play Howard’s ex-wife, who spent some time in prison for drug trafficking.  Rounding out the cast is Jussie Smollett, brother of actress Jurnee Smollett-Bell.  He is playing Howard and Henson’s son.

Empire  reunites Daniels’ with his Butler  writer Danny Strong and will air on Fox.

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