Another day…another “Empire” lawsuit.
This time, up to 400 inmates of the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center (JTDC) claim production at the facility in 2015 caused them “psychological and emotional trauma.”
According to the suit, filming forced hundreds of underaged inmates to remain on “lockdown” for days at the time with nothing to do.
Via Page Six:
The first two episodes of Season 2 take place inside the detention center, where Terrence Howard’s character, Lucious Lyon, was serving time.
The lawsuit alleges that production shut down many areas of the facility meant to educate and rehabilitate kids including “JTDC’s school, its facilities for family visits, its only outdoor recreation yard, its library, and its chapel.”
The lockdowns allegedly caused residents to stay in their cells for “days on end.” Filming also allegedly “interrupted, cut back or effectively eliminated” family visits.
“Putting the children housed at the JTDC on lockdown so that the Defendants could use the facility to film a profitable television show was a breach of fiduciary duty, and it violated the children’s rights under the U.S. Constitution and state law,” adds the suit, which also targets the detention center’s superintendents.
Episode one earned an estimated $750,000 per 30-second ad and episode two earned $600,000 per 30-second ad. The suit is seeking to recoup profits earned from both episodes.
Everyone wants a piece of the “Empire.”