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Fox's Empire hasn't exactly had much trouble finding its way into the limelight in the past year, with now-former star Jussie Smollett's legal issues still making waves in the news. However, the Lyon family has a lot more drama than just a suddenly absent Jamal to worry about, and it sounds like the upcoming Season 6 might be star Terrence Howard's swan song as an actor.
A one-time member of the MCU, Terrence Howard has spent the last five years as a bonafide TV star on one of the medium's most ratings-friendly dramas. But when Season 6 is in the can, will Howard's acting career follow it? Here's what he said when asked about what he sees for his career after Empire:
Oh, I'm done with acting. I'm done pretending.
In and of itself, Terrence Howard's quasi-retirement announcement is nearly as surprising as most of the messy situations that Lucious Fox gets himself into on Empire. Albeit with far less rage and fewer dead bodies on the ground, but still. One might imagine that Howard would have access to a slew of interesting offers to sort through in his post-Empire career, but it doesn't sound like he's interested in hearing them.
In his interview with Extra, Terrence Howard is asked if he's going into more philanthropic efforts, but he seems to have other things in mind. In his words:
No, not philanthropy. I'm just focusing on bringing the truth to the world.
That's an interesting comment to make, especially without any context concerning what kinds of truth Terrence Howard wants to bring to the world. For one, it sounds like the exact opposite of the kind of behavior that his character Lucious would latch onto. Even if the Lyon family patriarch would try to tell the truth, he'd just get drowned out by all the skeletons in his closet settling their bones.
Off the screen, Terrence Howard has spent some of 2019 embroiled in a legal situation involving investigations into his finances. It was reported that the government was going after Howard for failure to pay taxes in previous years, which isn't the first time the actor has faced such claims. When other Hollywood stars fall into that kind of trouble, they seemingly try to book as many acting jobs as possible in order to cover the legal fees involved. But Howard apparently has other plans in mind.
For what it's worth, though, Terrence Howard doesn't appear to be overwhelmingly happy that Empire is coming to an end with Season 6, and there are definitely elements of the show that he'll miss. Here's how he put it:
The cast. I love the cast members. I will miss them a great deal, and the crew.
Will Empire Season 6 really be the last time that fans get to see Terrence Howard portraying a fictional character on the small screen? Or were his comments really just a stealthy tease for some historical biopic or a "based on a true story" project that he's got cooking up? I guess we'll have to wait and see.
Check out the Extra interview below to see if you think Howard is being on the level or not.
Empire Season 6 will tear up the fall schedule when it debuts on Fox on Tuesday, September 24, at 9 p.m. ET.