As an executive producer, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson helped develop Power‘s hip-hop driven sensibility. As an actor playing Kanan, a cutthroat ex-convict, he brings the show’s street-savvy edge to life. Speaking with EW, Jackson touches on the upcoming season, Power‘s influence on his music career, ramping up the show’s sex scenes, and more.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: It seems like Kanan might have survived that epic fight between he and Ghost that took place during the season 2 finale. What can you tell us about your character’s return?
CURTIS “50 CENT” JACKSON: He comes back, but there are new people in position and new stuff going on. He wasn’t able to work his way into those circles, so now he’s going to take everything he wants by any means necessary.
Any tricks to getting into character?
I haven’t worked with an acting coach on this piece. This is easy stuff for me. I know the character. I know the backstories, his drives, why his mannerisms are the way they are. I’ve worked on all the different things you would need to develop and accurately portray a character for a long time, so it’s flattering when people say, “He’s not acting; he’s Kanan.”
How are you as an actor different from 50 Cent, the public figure?
A lot of 50 Cent’s energy is consistent with competing artists. The argument you would have for that is that a lot of artists make that energy in order to move up in notoriety. It’s doesn’t really work for everyone.
You released a mixtape inspired by your character in 2015. Does the show influence how you think about music?
Definitely. Kanan is an altar ego. As him, I can say something completely different than what 50 Cent would say. I’m going to do another Kanan tape that will be an LP of seven songs. I’m also going to do a promo tour.
You had a risqué moment on screen last year. Can we expect any sex scenes from your character this season?
I have some sex scenes, but they’re not typical sex scenes. It’s going to surprise you. We figured how to do some things you haven’t seen on television before. It was interesting shooting — it was a little bit awkward! The acting talent I was working with was like, “So, how are they going to shoot this?”
What’s one fun thing we might not know about the making of Power?
We’ve got dialect coaches that come in and help the actors — when a person is speaking Spanish on Power, we try to differentiate whether he’s Dominican or Puerto Rican, because you can hear it. Those things are really important so people can see themselves in the show.