Mariah Carey won't be hanging out with Cookie Lyon (Taraji P. Henson) on Season 2 of Fox's "Empire." Co-creator Danny Strong shot down the rumor over the weekend saying the singer won't be making an appearance despite fellow co-creator Lee Daniels hinting at her involvement.
“None of those people are going to actually be on the show," Strong told The Hollywood Reporter, also dismissing reports that Oprah Winfrey had nabbed a guest spot. "I can’t control what names all of a sudden take off as being guest stars because they’re not."
According to Billboard, Carey and Winfrey's names first surfaced as guest stars a few months ago when Daniels said he had contacted Winfrey about joining the show in guest role. However, Daniels later backtracked on his comments saying that Winfrey’s hectic schedule wouldn’t allow her time to film “Empire.”
“We just couldn’t fit her into the schedule. She really wanted to do the show, but she’s going to be on the next season for sure," he said.
In August, Daniels again dropped another hint about a celebrity guest when he said that Carey landed a cameo for Season 2. Jussie Smollett, who plays Jamal Lyon, further ignited the rumors when he told E! Online that he would love to have her on the show.
“I keep saying, and I hope they can make this happen, because she’s one of Lee’s closest friends, I really want to see Mariah Carey on the show,” he gushed.
Strong not only shot down reports that Carey would appear on the show, he also said there won't be a lot of celebrity guests when the show returns in March.
Guests stars on Season 2 of “Empire” have included Alicia Keys, Kelly Rowland, Pitbull and Timbaland. Common has also been rumored to be joining the cast when the show returns.
"Empire" episode 11, "Death Will Have His Day," will air on Fox Wednesday, March 30, at 9 p.m. EST.