In a case of “beating a dead horse,” actress-comedian Mo’Nique has set out to prove once and for all that she didn’t falsely claim that Lee Daniels offered her for the role of Cookie on “Empire.”
That role, of course, eventually went to Oscar-nominated actress Taraji P. Henson, who powered the “Empire” show to record-breaking Nielsen ratings and became a cultural phenomenon.
As the Atlanta Daily World has previously reported, Mo’Nique had been adamant that Daniels came to her first and wanted her to play Cookie, reportedly alongside Wesley Snipes.
Since her claims went public, Mo’Nique received a lot of blowback and was basically called a liar by the show’s writer Danny Strong and was called out by actresses Gabourney Sidibe and Henson.
Today, however, Mo’Nique produced the paper trail that substantiates her claims and she went on the radio show “Sway In The Morning” with printed out emails between her and a rep for Lee Daniels, in them the director’s liaison did ask her to screen test for Cookie.
Here are the texts below:
“Feb. 18, 2014;
Lee Daniels had a conversation with Mo’Nique about his new television pilot for Imagine Tv/Fox called “Empire”, said Sway reading an email.
“We would like to screen test her for the role of ‘Cookie.’ Please contact us with her television QUOTES, so that we can start a test, option, deal. We are tentatively looking at Monday, Feb 24 for the screen test.”
He then read another email from a rep for Daniels that said the deal fell through and the network insisted that the role go to Taraji.
Of course, executives at Fox, for reasons that have yet to be fully explained, if it ever will, preferred the role of Cookie go to Henson, as indicated in the email below:
“March 3, 2014;
Unfortunately it’s not going any further for Mo’Nique,
Lee fought for her because he thought she would be great for the pilot but studio and network executives insisted on offering the role to Taraji.
Thank you so much for providing us with her information.Sorry it didn’t work out. We’re all big fans of hers.”
Sorry it didn’t work out. We’re all big fans of hers.”
Mo’Nique reiterated that she is not bitter and has no ill will towards Daniels and Henson, nor the executives at Fox. She said she only wanted to clear her name after being called a liar by some of the show’s creators.
What do you think about Mo’Nique addressing the issue yet again? Do you believe that she is right to defend herself, or does she come off as an embittered woman who lost out on the role of a lifetime?
Take a look at the video of the interview below:
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