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Lee Daniels hints at an untold personal story in his new show, 'Star'

Lee Daniels is developing a new music-themed show for Fox.
Lee Daniels is developing a new music-themed show for Fox. "Star" will start shooting in December, 2015.
Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for DIFF

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“Empire" has slipped slightly in the ratings from last year, but it’s still a powerhouse — so much so that Fox has given the green light to another music-related series from "Empire" co-creator Lee Daniels.

The Frame's John Horn recently spoke with Daniels at the Middleburg Film Festival about the inspiration behind his new music-themed show, “Star,” and if it follows the storyline of "Empire."


Well, it doesn't follow "Empire" at all, ironically — that's weird. But it comes from my sisters singing on the stoop, watching uncles sing doo-wop on the corner. You know, The Temptations, The Supremes, a little bit of "Dreamgirls," a little bit of TLC, a little bit of that documentary that was about the backup singers. 

So, it's a little bit of all of that, but it's about girls that are struggling and it's about survival — what it takes to get to the top. And then when you reach the pinnacle of Mount Everest, then what? Are you soulless? What's left of you?

You always put a little bit of yourself in the stories you're telling. Is there a little bit of Lee Daniels in "Star?" 

Oh yeah. There's a whole lot of bit of Lee Daniels in "Star." You know, I've talked about most of my life through my work, but I haven't talked about when I first landed in Hollywood and what happened. They know that I had that nursing agency and everything, but what happened before I had that nursing agency? [laughs] 

What did happen before that nursing agency? 

You'll find out in "Star." You'll find out through Star's character. 

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