*Pepsi will again be front and center on Fox’s “Empire” when it returns on Wednesday, March 22.
Last season, its advertising was woven into a three-part story arc that resulted in character Jamal Lyon (Jussie Smollett) appearing in a special commercial break featuring a Pepsi ad that was also a capper to the storyline.
This time, the company will feature into the show’s narrative, as well as a digital video series that give “Empire” fans more plot and background to the show.
Tinashe, the singer-songwriter who was named part of Pepsi’s “Sound Drop” music-promotion program, will appear in “Empire” working alongside Jamal Lyon on a new project, a musical tribute. Viewers will be prompted to follow that storyline by seeking out a weekly video series on “Empire’s” Facebook and Instagram pages.
Other characters – Porsha (Ta’Rhonda Jones) and Becky Williams (Gabourey Sibide) will also appear in that program, along with musician Jidenna.
As the season progresses, Pepsi will in April make available six limited-edition collectible cans featuring artwork inspired by the show and created by artist Jon Moody. Fans who scan the artwork with their phones can use Shazam to find behind-the-scenes footage from the set of Jamal’s tribute.
Viewers will be rewarded for following it all by season’s end. In May, “Empire” will close its third-season plot with Jamal’s project, titled, “When Cookie Met Lucious, featuring Jamal.” The show will have an on-screen “unveil” of the work, but also direct viewers in one episode to stream Jamal’s entire work by using Shazam and a mobile device. Songs from season two and three will be featured.