Happy Birthday To ‘Empire’ Creator And Director Lee Daniels! Sha Be Allah December 24, 2015 feature, Film, Hip Hop Entertainment | Hip Hop TV, Film and Video Games, Hip Hop Film and Movie News, News Exclusives, TV TheSource.com and the entire Northstar Group would like to send a super born day salute to actor and director Lee Daniels! The Philly native is the creator and director of the Empire series as well as The Paperboy, The Butler and the Academy Award winning film Precious. Daniels got his start working on movies such as Under The Cherry Moon and Prince‘s Purple Rain before producing such silver screen classics as Monster’s Ball, which earned Halle Berry an Oscar and gained the movie an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Currently, the openly gay entertainment mogul is in the production stage of the Richard Pryor biopic starring funnyman Mike Epps and Oprah Winfrey.