Jussie Smollett was thought to be persona non grata on the set of Fox’s Empire, but sources close to the case are saying otherwise. Smollett’s colleagues allegedly want the actor back to continue playing his character Jamal Lyons, although the network might have other plans.
Sources on the show tell us cast members — including Taraji P. Henson and Terrence Howard — feel Jussie deserves a fair shake, and that should include a full return to the show. Just last week, Fox announced Jussie got an extension through season 6, but also … it had no plans to bring his character back to the show.
Our sources say as soon as the announcement was made, Jussie’s costars got busy contacting “Empire” brass and pushing for his return.
As for why … we’re told the cast feels Jussie’s character was an incredibly important part of the show, and they don’t feel his return will hurt ratings. In one of the final episodes of season 5, Jussie’s character, Jamal, got married in the first gay, black wedding on primetime TV.
The outlet adds that while Smollett is signed with the show through season six, it didn’t have plans to feature him in the series.