Jussie Smollett's co-workers aren't happy with him. TMZ reports that several of Smollett's Empire co-stars have written him off and want him to lose his job after he was indicted on filing a false police report and disorderly conduct.
Sources told the news outlet that many of the Empire actors are "f—ing furious" and feel that if Smollett is not fired by FOX that he should quit on his own.
Those cast members in question reportedly feel "hurt and embarrassed" after defending Smollett following his initial claim in January that he was the victim of a hate crime, only to learn of new evidence that points to him orchestrating the entire event.
TMZ also reports that "almost everyone" on set of the FOX drama is worried about the show's reputation following the controversy, including what will happen if he remains part of the cast.
Arguments on how to handle the situation have reportedly erupted among cast and crew members, many of whom believe Smollett is telling the truth and that he's innocent.
Following Smollett's bail hearing Thursday afternoon, the 36-year-old arrived on set and reportedly apologized to everyone, insisting that he is innocent. He reportedly has changed his cellphone number because of messages he was getting from angry cast members.
As previously reported, Smollett was arrested Thursday morning after turning himself in to Chicago police and is facing a felony charge of disorderly conduct for filing a false police report. He was released from custody on $100,000 bail and has been ordered to surrender his passport and to have no contact with the Osundairo brothers, the two men who claim they were hired by Smollett to fake the attack.
Chicago Police Department Superintendent Eddie Johnson said that Smollett's motive for the alleged hoax was dissatisfaction with his Empire salary. Johnson also claimed that Smollett was also responsible for the hate letter sent to Fox Studios.
Following the bail hearing, Smollett doubled down on his innocence.0comments
"Mr. Smollet is a young man of impeccable character and integrity who fiercely and solemnly maintains his innocence and feels betrayed by a system that apparently wants to skip due process and proceed directly to sentencing," read a statement sent out late Thursday on behalf of the Empire actor, first published by Deadline.
Should Smollett be found guilty, he faces a potential sentence of up to three years in prison.