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Queen Latifah Expands Her Empire

Queen Latifah has done nearly everything throughout her entertainment career–rapping, singing, acting, and producing. Now she is readying for a new daytime television show. She will launch her first syndicated daytime talk show in the fall of 2013. This will be her second go round–from 1999 to 2001, she hosted “The Queen Latifah Show” on TV.

Latifah, born Dana Owens, will produce the new show through her Flavor Unit Entertainment Company in partnership with Sony Pictures Television and Will Smith and James Lassiter’s Overbrook Entertainment.

“We are still in very, very early planning stages on this show,” says a Sony spokesperson, who which to be unnamed. “It’s anticipated to be on the air in September 2013. It’s a daytime syndicated series and those shows typically target women 25-54.”

Latifah’s entry into the entertainment world was via hip-hop. She started beat-boxing for the group Ladies First. Eventually, she landed a solo artist deal in 1988 with Tommy Boy Records. Her debut album, All Hail The Queen, was released in 1989, when she was just 19. She later branched out to acting, starring in the hit TV series “Living Single” (1992-1998). Films followed, including Set It Off, Last Holiday, and Hairspray. She was nominated for an Oscar for her role in the movie Chicago, becoming one of three hip-hop artists to receive an Academy Award nomination for action. (The others are Will Smith–Ali and The Pursuit of Happyness and Mark Wahlberg The Departed.)

The 1-year-old hip-hop entrepreneur is also co-founder of Flavor Unit Entertainment, which includes a record label, artist management firm, and a film/TV production arm.

With Oprah’s departure from syndicated daytime TV, the time might be right for Latifah’s new show. In fact, according to Sony, they were looking to team up with Latifah. “She was someone who we had on our shortlist to develop a project with for daytime,” says the Sony spokesperson. “And Overbrook has a relationship with her–her first television appearance was The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air starring Will Smith.”