How 'Empire's' Bryshere Gray Prepped for His Sex Scene With Naomi Campbell

by Raphael Chestang 3:55 PM PST, February 25, 2015
Playing How 'Empire's' Bryshere Gray Prepped for His Sex Scene With Naomi Campbell

One of the juiciest storylines of Empire is with Bryshere Gray, whose character, rising hip-hop star Hakeem Lyon, hooks up with a woman twice his age played by Naomi Campbell. Gray dished to ET's Nischelle Turner about what he did to prepare for his love scene with the supermodel.

"I might have did some pushups," Gray, who performs under the stage name Yazz the Greatest, said with a laugh.

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The age gap between Gray, 21, and Campbell, 44, is a part of one of the juicy storylines on Fox's breakout freshman hit. Gray explained why he wasn't necessarily shocked by his character's eyebrow-raising arc.

"Hakeem has a thing for older women," Gray said. "That's his fetish. He has serious mommy issues."

On tonight's episode, Camilla (Campbell) and Hakeem's mother Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) meet. The outspoken Cookie -- never one to bite her tongue -- gives the new couple an earful.

"It's like our coming-out debut," Gray said in describing the scene. "Cookie notices it from afar and she ain't having it."

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Campbell told Vogue that it was fashion designer and friend Diane Von Furstenberg who convinced her to take the role. There are rumors swirling that other A-list stars could be making future guest appearances. Empire has already booked Courtney Love, Cuba Gooding Jr. and Raven-Symone, and will introduce Jennifer Hudson and Snoop Dogg this season.

"Maybe Denzel [Washington will be on the show]," Gray said. "I'm hoping."

Gray went to the same Philadelphia high school as Will Smith and considers the Focus actor a mentor. While Smith hasn't given any indication that he'd appear on the show, he has given Gray some advice.

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"Save your money, boy," Gray said, reciting Smith's words of wisdom.

Watch the video to hear Gray perform a freestyle rap live on the ET stage. Empire airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Fox.