Fall TV Preview

Empire Season 2: How Big Will It Be? Plus: The Latest on 24's Future

Empire Ratings Daylight Savings

Fox’s Empire — which grew its audience every week during Season 1 — is counting on a bigger encore in at least one sense of the word, by increasing its episode count from 12 to 18 for Season 2.

As is increasingly becoming a common practice, the hit drama’s sophomore run will be split into two halves, with a break in between.

New for Season 2 is R&B singer/songwriter Ne-Yo, who will join Timbaland in penning original music for the series, plus some “amazing guest stars” to be announced later, Fox Television Group CEO Dana Walden shared with reporters on Monday. Added Fox Television Group CEO Gary Newman: “And the stories we’ve heard for Season 2 are going to blow away the audience.”

Empire will again air Wednesdays at 9, because as Newman stated, “We’d be crazy to move it.” As he elaborated for TVLine, “The show really was appointment television in a way that’s kind of unprecedented in this day and age. So it didn’t make any sense to us at all to move it.”

Newman insisted that the sudser’s steamy content didn’t preclude moving it to an 8 o’clock time slot, where it could have helped launch a new show behind it. Instead, “We wanted to make it as easy for people to find it live as ever.”

But will even more people find it? “We don’t want to be greedy. If we came back with the audience that we left off with we would be thrilled,” Walden said. “And based on the creative that we’ve heard… I don’t think that is going to be a problem.”

To help the audience retention cause, Fox is planning a big summertime promotional push. But while Season 1 is available on services such as VOD, Fox Now and Hulu, there will be no repeats airing on the network itself.

WILL JACK BE BACK?24 Movie Status
The Fox brass during their Upfronts conference call also addressed the future of 24, which had a solid, 12-episode return last spring/summer.

Noting there is “Nothing immediate” on the horizon, Newman told TVLine, “We have been developing another version of 24, but it’s still very early in the process, so there’s nothing we could tell you at this time other than we are working on something.”

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20 Comments
  1. erika says:

    From 12 to 18 episode on Empire season 2,Is this a good or bad idea?

    • JJM says:

      If it’s a split season, then I’m putting some trust in it. I’d rather a solid 9 with a break followed by another solid 9 rather than a full 24, which would ruin in. I trust the full 18, but anything beyond that would ruin the writing. Look at Gotham and Sleepy Hollow for example.

    • lll says:

      I’m worried about the episode count too, but Fox was smart to spit the episodes into fall and spring chunks (i’m assuming nine for fall and nine for spring).

  2. Mr. Tran K says:

    Really hope 24 returns whether or not Kiefer Sutherland returns as Jack Bauer and if it does, it should be the end of the real time thriller.

    • Kvivik says:

      I have a feeling that if 24 returns, Jack Bauer will not be a part of the story line…or at most only tangentially mentioned.

  3. More 24 would be great.

  4. The Grinch says:

    Another version of 24? Perhaps following Yvonne Strahovski’s character? Maybe throw in a redeemed Tony Almeda? I’d show up for that.

  5. Carola says:

    Yay for Empire. BTW I would love if Quentin Alexander would get cast on Empire in a guest role. He would fit right in!

  6. Pat says:

    They really are taking their sweet time with 24 season 10. But I suppose that will mean they get it right, right? They better pay off the Tony jailbreak that was on the box set and actually end it and not try and milk it because ratings are good.

  7. wrstlgirl says:

    24!!!!!

  8. kmw says:

    Not surprised it went to 18 episodes that is about all the episodes they could do with their time and musical issues. And I am glad they didn’t move it. We will see this time how they do with layoff between episodes, but knowing how this show has gone it will not affect it too much. As for 24, if they get Kiefer to come back great but if they cannot get him back it wouldn’t work.

  9. It’s funny how people think whether it’s 9-9 or 18 straight that it makes a difference. You either have 18 quality episodes or you don’t. You still need to fill an episode count.

    • Diva DIary says:

      That’s actually not true. The Good Wife writers even spoke of this problem of writing so many episodes. They had to think of their seasons as a split seasons for them to write them. Too many episodes in a row can make the show lose momentum, but if you split it, they can be more concise with their writing and have a better build up. Of course, this also gets rid of those horrible fillers because no one wants to see a filler episode.

  10. Diva DIary says:

    They got Ne-Yo! Man, can make some great music.

  11. Jax&Juice's Girl says:

    They should stick to at least 13 episodes……but hey the more Empire the better!!

  12. Ray says:

    Bring back 24..How about Kate Morgan, Belchek and Chloe team up to bring back Jack from Russia, have Jack as a minor character have him in some scenes but not the focal point. Kate gets redemption for Audrey.

  13. christine huck says:

    I LOVE 24 IT IS AWESOME PROGRAM……………………………..

  14. SheilaS says:

    The series will not be the same without Kieffer Sutherland, but if he won’t return then maybe they should ask Liam Neeson. But I will always be on team Kieffer Sutherland

  15. Danny says:

    Empire driving me crazy! can’t wait for season 2.