While there’s a clear public divide as it pertains to Bill Cosby and the nearly 60 women who accused the comedian of sexual harassment, there are many who still believe The Cosby Show, which lived on NBC for eight seasons, is still a classic piece of American television.
Monday night (May 15) at the Fox upfront presentation in New York City, Terrence Howard, star of the Lee Daniels’ Empire spoke with reporters about his early days as an actor and working on the beloved television show.
“Back in 1998, I had the opportunity to go be on The Cosby Show and I remember walking around the [set] and watching Bill Cosby. He had the number one, the number two show because Roseanne had just taken over at the time, but watching them and thinking man, I would love to be a part of something like this, and something that touches so many people.” Howard recalled.
Wanting to have an effect on people, Howard said now with Empire being in its third season, he thinks the show “touches more people” than The Cosby Show did during its prime.
“A year ago, I’m walking around on our set and I realize that this show is touching more people than The Cosby Show ever did because this show is India, this show is in Pakistan this show is in all parts of Arabia and all throughout South America and like wow! We did it!”
From the video below, it’s clear when Howard spoke about Empire “touching more people” he’s speaking of actual geographic reach and not cultural impact. Cosby’s sexual misconduct allegations came to light in October 2014 when comedian Hannibal Buress alluded to Cosby’s infamous past during a stand up performance in Philly. Since then, Cosby’s reputation has been tarnished and as a result reruns from the beloved show were pulled from many networks and streaming platforms.