Taraji P. Henson describes mood on ‘Empire’ set amid Jussie Smollett scandal

Taraji P. Henson (Photo credit: Nancy Rivera / Splash News)

Taraji P. Henson has insisted things are “great” on the “Empire” set.

The musical drama has been hit by disruption following  Jussie Smollett’s arrest on charges relating to him allegedly faking a racist and homophobic attack on himself earlier this year. The feat prompted producers to ax him from the final two episodes of the series, but his co-star — who plays family matriarch Cookie Lyon — claims the scandal hasn’t affected the atmosphere during filming.

She told “Entertainment Tonight” reporters, “It’s a great atmosphere.”

While the 48-year-old actress stayed tight-lipped on how Smollett’s character — her on-screen son Jamal Lyon — will be written out of the finale, she is excited about what’s in store for her own alter ego.

She said, “Cookie’s on a really emotional roller-coaster this year. She’s finding herself.”

“Empire” showrunner Brett Mahoney recently insisted it is “too early” to make a decision on whether Jussie will keep his job on the show as he and other executives working on the show want to see how his legal case develops first.

He said, “It’s a matter of trusting the process and allowing the legal process to play out and see where it goes from there. And it’s too early to think about what we would have to do if we didn’t have Jussie.

“We have such a strong ensemble and we have so many stories to tell for all of these fascinating characters that it’s bigger than one character, but it’s too early to think about the show without him.”

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