Lee Daniels’ ‘Empire’ and Octavia Spencer’s ‘Red Band Society’ Join Fox’s Lineup

Source: Weinstein Co.

Fox, once known for its acerbic wit and innovative, sharp-edged humor (this was, like, back in the early ’90s, when they were the new kids on the block and The SimpsonsMarried…With Children, and Roseanne were still shocking), has spent the last decade building a brand concerned with reality TV and American Idol-derived talent shows.

Shows like Hell’s Kitchen and the re-imagined Cosmos have done well for Fox, and old fan favorites The Simpsons and Family Guy continue to garner viewers despite being past their expiration date; 24 is also back, suggesting a certain reluctance, or inability, to think of new ideas on the network’s part. But according to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox has just ordered two new, potentially daring dramas: Lee Daniels’ Empire and a remake of the Spanish drama Red Band Society.

This is Daniels’ first foray into television directing. Daniels’ popularity swelled after his bold if not entirely palatable adaptation of Sapphire’s linguistically unique novel, Push, retitled Precious, earned him an Oscar nomination.