As if the series coming to end wasn’t bad enough, there’s even more bad news for Empire fans.

According to Deadline, the show’s final season has been cut short due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Empire was slated to have 20 episodes in its sixth and final season. However, only 18 episodes had been completed, with some footage for episode 19 logged before production was shut down due to the pandemic.

Producers have to drop the original series finale and are now scrambling with editors to create a seamless and worthy finale for long-time fans.

The series is expected to conclude with episode 18, which will now feature some of the footage shot for episode 19.

This also isn’t the first time Empire‘s finale has been in limbo. Producers, writers, and the cast wanted original cast member Jussie Smollett to be involved in the final season in some way.

However, Fox execs put an end to that hope due to the fallout over Smollett’s allegedly stage hate crime incident last year and the legal battles it has caused.

Smollett’s character was written out of the series in season 5, but has been referenced throughout the final season.

There are 3 more Empire episodes left, with the series finale to air on April 21st.

However, this may not be the end of the Empire world. It was reported in January that Fox is seriously interested in a spin-off series centered around Cookie Lyon, starring Taraji P. Henson.

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