Demi Moore & Rumer Willis Talk Empire Season 4

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Demi Moore & Rumer Willis Talk Empire Season 4
Posted by Wilson Morales

October 4, 2017

Airing tonight at 8:00pm ET/PT on Fox TV is the second episode, titled “Full Circle,” of season 4 of its hit TV series, ‘Empire.’

With Leah still insisting that he is a monster, Lucious sneaks away in hopes of finding out what type of person he was before the explosion. Cookie panics that Lucious has gone missing on Claudia’s watch, until she realizes he found his way to Uncle Eddie, a music icon who has since become family to the Lyons. Meanwhile, with Anika still behind bars, Hakeem and Tiana grow more comfortable as a family, and Becky makes a rash decision regarding Jamal’s new song.

Cast includes: Terrence Howard as Lucious Lyon, Taraji P. Henson as Cookie Lyon, Jussie Smollett as Jamal Lyon, Bryshere Gray as Hakeem Lyon, Trai Byers as Andre Lyon, Grace Gealey as Anika Gibbons, Gabourey Sidibe as Becky, Serayah as Tiana Brown, Xzibit as Shyne Johnson, Ta’Rhonda Jones as Porsha

Recurring Cast Members include Taye Diggs as Angelo DuBois, Andre Royo as Thirsty Rawlings, Terrell Carter as Warren Hall, Leslie Uggams as Leah Walker, Demi Moore as Nurse Claudia and Rumer Willis as Tory Ash.

Guest Cast include Teyonah Parris and Forest Whitaker.

For Demi Moore and Rumer Willis, it’s the first time mother and daughter are on the same platform on television. Both joined the series last season with Willis coming on first as Tory Ash, a talented singer who struggled with heroin; while Moore appeared in the last episode as Claudia, the nurse who is helping Lucious recover from his amnesia and the loss of one of his legs. Before she found success on the big screen with films like St. Elmo’s Fire, Ghost, G.I. Jane and Indecent Proposal, Moore’s acting career began on the daytime soap General Hospital. Willis, daughter of actor Bruce Willis, has worked on several indie films and has done a number of episodic roles on various shows, includes a recurring role on the 90210 reboot series.

As Season 4 gets underway, Blackfilm.com spoke with Moore and Willis on being on this hit series.

Do you think your character has taken your career in a new direction, especially with your music?

Rumer Willis: Definitely. I have always loved singing. It’s always been a passion but I never really knew the right avenue to put myself out there as a musician and when this opportunity came about, I was really excited because it felt like the perfect thing at the right time to be able to put myself out there more as a musician.

Demi Moore: Which I knew way before that. I accosted Lee Daniels when I ran into him at the Sunset Tower having dinner. I said to him, “You know what? My kid needs to be on your show. She’s just the right fit!”

Although your characters are different from each other, will we see the two of you together on the show?

Demi Moore: So far no. They said to keep it totally different as opposed to making that happen, which in one way it’s more challenging and smarter. It’s obvious that they could have done that, but it is Empire and anything is possible.

What does it mean for either of you to be a part of this show?

Demi Moore: It means fun and family. In looking at it, there’s something very powerful this combination that they have been able to harness with doing the music. That’s not an easy element. Personally, when they asked me to do it, I knew just to say yes even though I had no idea what they would have me do. I really wanted that opportunity to be able to spend time with Rumer and because we shoot on location, I am in the small bedroom of her apartment. That’s it.

Rumer Willis: I was a huge fan of the show before I ever was on it or thought possible to be on it. I think for me what I always found so remarkable was the way that they do the music. From the moment I saw the show, I was like, “I need to be on the show.” It the first thing I think since Glee that had taken a venue into doing music in a way that wasn’t campy or cheesy. It was really allowing quite a few musicians, actually musicians who had never acted before, to have an opportunity to be musicians on television, which is something I think no one has ever done. It’s such a huge cast and like my mom said, it really is a family.

Demi Moore: There are songs from the show that should be on the radio.


Taraji P. Henson is always talking about diversity in front and behind the camera, and being a part of Empire, do you guys see the impact of diversity and what that means to the success of a show. Not only a show, but the network itself?

Rumer Willis: Yes. I think it’s really cool that my mom and I are the minorities of the cast. I think that’s pretty incredible and I think that we’re in an age, obviously where with as much progress that has been made in the year or so, we still see how issues we thought we had come a lot farther in are not as far as we would want. It makes me excited to see a show that has such diversity and is lifting people up in a way.

Demi Woore: I love it. To me, it feel natural. To see the opportunities, as you mentioned, behind the scenes is great. Right now, with one of our lead camera operators, I think it’s his second show as the DP and it’s so great to see that.

We’re going to see a lot of scenes between your character, Lucious and Cookie. Can you give us some insight as to what to expect?

Demi Moore: I come in because Lucious has had this accident and he’s lost his memory and I’m a brain trauma specialist. I’m helping him recover on every level, more so psychologically and I think the challenge comes from the innocence of who Dwight is. Claudia knows she could lose Dwight to going back to being Lucious again and she, in a sense, is trying to protect his soul. There’s the conflict as opposed to coming up against Cookie in a typical female/ female “you’re after my man” dynamic. That’s been there and done that. He’s emerging back and he doesn’t know who Lucious is and he’s starting to see these things about himself and the hard life he’s had. So Nurse Claudia is trying to protect that, but that comes with a price. Just know that Claudia only refers to him as Dwight and the only other person who does that is his mother.

Having been in the business for a long time, is there an opportunity to mentor some of the cast members and what advice would you give to them?

Demi Moore: When I see someone come in and acquire fame very quickly, one of the things I realized is that I have done a lot in my life but I don’t know if I’ve experienced it all. So I would say to don’t forget to slow down and really be in the moment of where you are and appreciate all that you have as you’re striving to move forward to tackle even bigger things. Too often we say, “Where was I and what did I do?” It’s important to not lose the human connection in our technological age.


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