Jussie Smollett Not Returning to Season Six of Empire, Says Fox
Jussie Smollett Not Returning to Season Six of 'Empire,' Says Fox
His future with the show has been in question.
Empire without Jussie Smollett? It looks like that may be happening in season six.
Fox Entertainment announced yesterday that Empire would be returning for another season, but Smollett’s character, Jamal Lyons, would not.
“By mutual agreement, the studio has negotiated an extension to Jussie Smollett’s option for season six, but at this time there are no plans for the character of Jamal to return to Empire,” Fox Entertainment and 20th Century Fox TV told ET.
This means he technically could come back later on, but as of now, he won’t be.
“We’ve been told that Jussie will not be on Empire in the beginning of the season but he appreciates they have extended his contract to keep Jamal’s future open,” a representation for Smollett responded.
Smollett’s future with the show has been in question ever since he was accused of filing a false police report after he came forward about an alleged homophobic and racist attack in Chicago earlier this year.
The alleged attackers were later identified as former Empire background actors who were friendly with Smollett, leading police to investigate the possibility that Smollett himself staged the attack. He was charged with filing a false police report, but he maintained his innocence and the charges were ultimately dropped.
But the damage was done, and Smollett was removed from the final two season five episodes of Empire.
Several cast members recently threw their continued support behind Smollett in the wake of his uncertain future, requesting that he be brought back to the show next season.
It appears that, for now at least, those requests have gone unheeded.
The final episode of the season airs next Wednesday.