What do you do when you need to prove you’re right when people are side-eyeing you and saying you’re wrong? You bring solid proof and evidence to the table. And that’s exactly what Mo’Nique did during an interview on Sway in the Morning.
Last month Mo’Nique shocked the world—well, only Empire fans—when she said she was originally offered the role of Cookie Lyon on the hit Fox TV show. Apparently, most people dismissed the idea and thought she was still riding out a vendetta against Lee Daniels after he claimed she got herself blackballed in Hollywood.
Well, emails don’t lie, and that’s exactly what Mo’Nique brought to Sway’s show.
“You know when I heard Danny Strong had come on the show and was adamant about Mo’Nique was never offered that role and he’d gone on other places and said it. And I tweeted that brother and said, ‘Will you speak as loudly when you understand that you’re telling something that’s not correct?’” Mo’Nique stated on the radio show.
Mo’nique cleared the air and said bringing proof that she was offered the role isn’t about animosity, because she has a lot of respect for Daniels and Strong; it’s only about principle.
Here’s one of the emails that Sway read:
Feb. 18, 2014
Lee Daniels had a conversation with Mo’Nique about his new television pilot for Imagine Tv/Fox called “Empire.” 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.
And another one:
Feb. 18, 2014
Hello I am following up on my previous e-mail regarding Lee Daniels’ pilot and Mo’Nique’s television quotes. This is a time sensitive matter. Lee really does not want Mo’Nique to miss this opportunity.
The confusion comes in on the part of Daniels, who apparently didn’t realize he couldn’t just offer someone a role without getting approval from network executives first. On March 3, according to an email, the deal fell through:
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.
So there you have it. Mo’Nique could have been Cookie Lyon, but the network wanted the role to go to Taraji P. Henson instead.
Mo’Nique clearly wanted to clear her name and prove that she was right, but something tells me that others just want her to be quiet and go on with her career and put it all behind her. But like she said, it’s the principle.