Empire's Taraji P. Henson Reveals Why She 'Fought Hard' to Have Explosive Cookie-Lucious Sex Scene Cut

The epic, bat-wielding brawl between Empire exes Cookie and Lucious in last spring’s midseason premiere was supposed to climax with the combustable twosome having sex. But as TVLine reported, the character’s portrayers, Taraji P. Henson and Terrence Howard, lobbied for a rewrite. And they got their wish. The pivotal sequence concluded with the fiery couple exchanging merely a kiss.

At the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour on Tuesday, Henson revealed for the first time why she felt compelled to intervene. “For me, as a woman, I felt that the power would be lost if she had sex with him,” she told reporters. “Cookie’s trying to evolve. She really loves this man. She just snapped and destroyed the entire Empire [offices] with a bat. That’s very animalistic. And then to get to that peak of passion, it just felt like it was taking a stronger stance for herself to not fall for flesh… and walk away.

“Cookie’s a grown woman,” Henson continued. “She’s had three kids. She’s served 17 years in jail. There’s no time to play now. She’s protecting herself. So that’s why I fought hard for that. And I just thought it was a stronger choice. We have many years to deal with this couple, and it’s a very complex relationship. And I just thought that made it even more complicated.”

It was back in March that the episode’s director, Craig Brewer, first told TVLine about the script tweak. “[They] sat down and gave me the most compelling reasons about how this scene should end,” explained Brewer. “And they were both adamant that they shouldn’t have sex.”

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10 Comments
  1. Brian says:

    This was a good call on their end. Them not having sex did add to the scene and their relationship.

  2. christy l lemelle says:

    I also agree and love the show you guys really did that!!!

  3. Vanessa Alim says:

    I can see the point of not having sex …a very intelligent point.

  4. Arthur says:

    I still don’t get it why the writers are so adamant about this couple, Lucious has shown more than once that he is beyond anything akin to redemption, and Cookie seems to know this but they keep insisting with this sinking ship.

  5. Stephanie says:

    Just plan ole love Empire this movie is real life i can relate to. Families reality is understood and well respected from the music to the family kids just Awesome

  6. Billy Bob Johnson says:

    Something all actors strive for – a director who will listen to their take on a scene.

  7. Adriano says:

    Nice entry, I like read your articles here. Thanks!

  8. Kiwi3 says:

    Thought this was a great decision because it showed even with the meltdown that she had finally put up some emotional boundaries between her and Lucious. Such a brilliant scene!

  9. aphualarbi says:

    This episode actually made me happy because it shows that sometimes the actors know whats better for their characters

  10. mybchZ1986r says:

    I like read your articles here.