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"This television thing was a fluke" – "Empire" creator Lee Daniels ready to return to directing

ABC/Lorenzo Bevilaqua
ABC/Lorenzo Bevilaqua

(NEW YORK) — Lee Daniels is thankful to have two primetime shows on television, but the Empire and Star creator says he’s seriously itching to get back to directing.

“I miss being behind the camera as a filmmaker because you know right now as a creator it’s really more administrative,” Daniels tells ABC Radio. “You start with something and you sprinkle your fairy dust on it and you manage it. You’re watching the baby walk and go to school and go to college. You’re not really creating anything new.”

For Daniels, who started his creative career by directing actors in the back of a church theater, directing is still his first love and something he’d like to get back to — both on the big screen and on Broadway.

“I’m a director — you know by nature. And I come from theater so what I miss is theater,” Daniels explains. “I really miss that. So I’m coming back to that. And that’s my intent, to come back to theater.”

While Daniels future intentions are clear, the now successful television producer recalls that his emergence into television wasn’t something he specifically planned.

“I did it by accident. This television thing was a fluke,” Daniels says. “They weren’t buying black television and so I wanted it on my bucket list as an artist. You know when I did Empire — just check it off the list as something to do.”

Daniels continues: “I had no idea that pilot was going to get picked up — or that it was going to go for thirteen episodes. Let alone like four years. It was like, “What? What?!”

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