In early August, Empire star Terrence Howard was hit with a lawsuit from his former management company, Authentic Talent and Literary Management, who claim that they saved Howard’s job on the Fox series and are owed $250,000.
EW talked to Fox CEO and chairman Dana Walden who defended Howard and his importance to Empire.
“I can’t comment on the lawsuit and I don’t know much about it,” says Walden. “I will tell you we have an extraordinary relationship with Terrence and there has never been a time where we have had convesations about firing him or doing the show without him. He is a meaningful and critical element of the show. Terrence’s work on the show is extraordinary. I’m sorry his work has not been recognized in the awards consideration. He grounds a lot of the reality of this world.
“There’s candidly never been a conversation about getting rid of Terrence. To the contrary, there are conversations about how much he means to the show.”
Empire season 3 premieres Sept. 21 at 9 p.m. on Fox.