Hip-hop drama Empire is saying goodbye to its fans. The upcoming episode next week is the series finale.
Instead of releasing the promised total of 20 episodes, the series will only be able to air 18 episodes of the current season. This means that next week’s episode 18 will sort of wrap up the whole story on April 21 even if it wasn’t what the creators/executive producers had in mind.
The announcement was made at the end of Episode 15, Love Me Still, shocking the devoted fans for the sudden change of plans.
Empire creators Lee Daniels and Danny Strong said that they are presently left without a choice because of the near industry-wide production shutdown. The production team were only able to film episode 19 halfway through.
FOX has also made the decision to end the series two episodes early.
“The episode airing on April 21 was never meant to be the series finale, but due to current events it will likely be the last one our fans will see for a while,” Strong said.
It is not clear yet if a part of the episode 19 that was filmed before the home quarantine will be included in the season finale.
It may not be totally over yet
Despite the sudden changes of plan, Daniels and Strong are still hopeful that they will be able to shoot a proper ending one day.
“We had an ending for the series planned that we all loved, and hopefully someday we’ll be able to film it and give the series its proper conclusion,” Daniels stated.
There’s also a possibility that the franchise will live on through a spinoff. Deadline reported back in January that FOX has been thinking of creating a series that will feature one of the main characters, Cookie Lyon (Taraji P. Henson).
Episode 18 synopsis
Titled Home Is On the Way, episode 18 will have Cookie reflect on her life and the woman she has become. This follows during the Bossyfest launch and while fighting for her right to gain control of Empire again.
Lucious (Terence Howard) is undeniably in love with Cookie while he continues to support Yana (guest star Kiandra Richardson) on her road to fame.
He will also face the biggest threat of his life yet and as he prepares to deal with it, he will realize that in the end family is the most important thing in life.
Empire’s season 6 episode 18 will air on April 21 at 9PM ET/PT on Fox.
Image courtesy of Empire/YouTube Screenshot