Empire's next episode was not supposed to be its last.
But thanks to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, FOX has decided to end the series two episodes early, meaning that it will likely serve as the series finale.
In separate statements, Empire creators/executive producers Lee Daniels and Danny Strong opened up about the show's earlier than planned conclusion.
They both hope to bring closure to the fans at some point in the future, but FOX has no plans to do so, meaning that Empire Season 6 Episode 18 is set to end with a lot of threads left dangling.
"I’m heartbroken we aren’t getting to shoot the finale we wanted — at least not yet,” Daniels said.
Added Strong, “We had an ending for the series planned that we all loved, and hopefully someday we’ll be able to film it and give the series its proper conclusion.”
While FOX never officialy confirmed the final two episodes would never see the light of day, the network started running promos two weeks ago to reveal that the series would wrap April 21.
The mysteries and storylines kicked off throughout Empire Season 6, including the truth about Cookie and Lucious being murdered are not expected to be wrapped up until the 20th episode -- which is not set to be produced.
“The episode airing on April 21 was never meant to be the series finale, but due to current events it will likely be the last one our fans will see for a while,” Strong said.
The news is somewhat surprising, especially when you consider that Empire spent some time as one of the most-watched shows on the air, and attracted an iconic array of guest stars.
For it to end without an appropriate finale is a bit of a slap in the face. There's nothing stopping FOX from ordering a two-hour wrap-up.
The ratings are obviously a fraction of what they once were, but this was a signature series for the network at one one point, and the fans who have stuck with it deserve resolution.
Here is a synopsis of the current Empire series finale, “Home Is On The Way,” Airdate: 4/21
In the midst of the Bossyfest launch and the fight to regain control of Empire, Cookie reflects on her life and the woman she has become.
Lucious finds it impossible to deny his feelings for Cookie, while continuing to support Yana (guest star Kiandra Richardson) and her rise to stardom. When the Lyons face their biggest threat yet, Lucious prepares for the battle of his life and realizes that in the end, family is what matters the most.
What do you think of all of this?
Do you think the series deserves a proper send-off?
Hit the comments below.
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Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.