Jussie Smollett was a promising television star, singer, and personality prior to the 2019 incident that derailed his career. The Empire actor was making waves in the mainstream as an openly queer actor portraying a gay singer on prime time television. While he was already onto a promising career, it is rumored that the star wanted more airtime and attention, so he developed a plot that eventually backfired.
Despite Smollett’s very descriptive side of the story, It was later alleged that he made the whole thing up and that the two men involved were personal trainers – one Jussie was dating and his brother. Smollett was ultimately found guilty and spent a total of 6 days behind bars instead of his full five-month sentence, thanks to a hefty $150,000 bond posted for his release. It was reported that Smollett cost the city of Chicago $130,105.15.
Jussie Smollett has wasted no time trying to put the mess behind him and regain his career. With the support of his famous friends and his fans, he began making red carpet appearances again and doing interviews in support of the film B-Boy Blues, his directorial debut. In the announcement for the project, Variety stated, “Former “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett’s directing debut has finally found a home: BET+ has picked up ‘B-Boy Blues,’ which will debut on the streamer on June 9 in time for Pride Month. As part of the pickup, Mona Scott-Young and her Monami Entertainment have joined the film as a producer and was instrumental in getting the deal done with BET+.”
In addition to the film finally being released, Jussie also returned to the music scene with a single titled “Some Things.” The record drew comparisons to Michael Jackson in his Off The Wall era and is said to be a taste of what is to come on Smollett’s sophomore album. The actor recently sat down with Sway to discuss his comeback and everything he has been through in the last few months. One of the major revelations from his interview is that despite being an openly gay man, he’s been struggling with his own homophobia. “I found myself dealing with my own internalized homophobia… as an openly gay black man who leads with his blackness… I’m embarrassed, and I’m a little bit ashamed to say that.” Elsewhere he went on to say, “I felt like I just became a [expletive] that got his [behing] beat.”
This was in response to finally seeing his interview with Robin Roberts from 2019. He felt that he did not properly represent himself and was instead playing up a character that he now regrets. He felt he got too wrapped up in trying to be a representative for queer people that he was almost put off by himself. “I felt like that’s what people saw me as.”