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Hollywood Life: Taraji P. Henson on appeal of 'Empire' character

Taraji P. Henson has become one of television's hottest stars thanks to her role as the tough Cookie Lyon on Fox's "Empire." In the latest issue of W, 44-year-old Henson talked about why Cookie has become a hit with viewers.

"They see her heart. They see her intentions. And they love her style -- her style is 17 years behind the fashion curve, which makes the clothes a character on the show," Henson said. "As Cookie grows, you'll see her fashion grow. And people love that -- she's a work in progress."

During the interview, Henson admitted that she didn't want to take the role at first, and even turned it down. "I was like, 'This is stupid,' " Henson said. "Hip-hop -- dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb. But then I started to think . . . 'She hits her son with a broom. She talks back.' Clearly, this was a challenge."

His place in the 'Sun'

Patrick Schwarzenegger has been cast in the big-screen romantic drama "Midnight Sun," in which he'll co-star with Bella Thorne, reports. It's based on a 2006 Japanese film about a 17-year-old girl who suffers from a rare disease that makes sunlight deadly. Schwarzenegger will play the guy who falls for her.

"Midnight Sun" will mark Schwarzenegger's first leading man role. The actor son of Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger has appeared in films including "The Benchwarmers," "Stuck in Love," "Grown Ups 2" and "Dear Eleanor."

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