Fox has renewed “Empire.”
The order for a fifth season of the music drama comes with four episodes remaining in its 2017-18 run, and fewer than two weeks before Fox makes its annual upfront presentation to advertisers in New York.
“’Empire’ is as compelling, emotional and unpredictable as it ever was,” said Michael Thorn, entertainment president for Fox Broadcasting. “We are so proud of our amazing cast, led by Terrence and Taraji, who deliver powerful performances week after week. We’d also like to thank our tremendous creative team – Lee, Danny, Brett, Ilene, Sanaa, Brian and Francie – whose inspired storytelling continues to create the unforgettable, jaw-dropping OMG moments that have always been signature to ‘Empire’.”
Currently in its fours season, “Empire” has slid from its once-dominant position as one of television’s highest rated series. Through 14 episodes this season, the music-industry drama is averaging a 1.9 rating in the 18-49 demo and 5.8 million total viewers — down 31% and 24%, respectively , from season three — according to Nielsen live-plus-same day numbers. The series remains an important programming piece for Fox, however, as it still regularly wins its Wednesday-night time period, providing a strong lead-in for fellow drama “Star.” According to data from Fox, the series is its second most watched in multi-platform viewing, averaging 11.3 million viewers.
Starring Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson, “Empire” is co-created by Lee Daniels and Danny Strong. Executive producers are Daniels, Strong, Ilene Chaiken, Brian Grazer, Francie Calfo, Sanaa Hamri, Brett Mahoney, and Dennis Hammer. Imagine Television produces with 20th Century Fox Television. Mahoney will take over for Chaiken as showrunner on the series for the fifth season. Chaiken currently has a drama pilot in contention for next season at Fox, and is exiting day-to-day duties on “Empire” to focus on her pilot and additional new development for 20th Century Fox Television, where she is under an overall deal.