Wise will play Preacher Azal, a politically conscious, Muslim rapper who piques Jamal Lyon’s (Jussie Smollett) musical interest. Hanks will play Blake, a blue-collar rapper, a skilled MC and and lyricist.
Season 4 has seen Lucious (Terrence Howard) battling to regain his physical and mental faculties after the explosion and Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) with her own challenges, revisiting her traumatic 17 years in prison in a series of flashbacks.
Wise’s recent credits include guest starring roles in Lucifer on Fox, Showtime’s Homeland and the horror indie Murder in the Woods opposite Danny Trejo. He’s repped by Entertainment Lab and Global Artists Agency.
Hanks has recurred on IFC’s Maron, Showtime’s Shameless, and HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, and guest-starred in BET’s Tales. His film credits include Bratz, Indiana Jones: The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull, Larry Crowne, and Project X. He’s repped by Untitled Entertainment and Loeb & Loeb.
Empire was created by Lee Daniels and Danny Strong, who executive produce with Brian Grazer, showrunner Brett Mahoney, Ilene Chaiken, Francie Calfo and Sanaa Hamri.
Empire returns Wednesday, March 28 at 8/7c on Fox.