Terrence Howard is standing by his Empire co-star and friend, Jussie Smollett.
The Empire star took to Instagram Saturday to share a touching video of Smollett playing with Howard's infant son while on an airplane, adding a message of support amid his indictment with felony charges related to his alleged Jan. 26 "attack."
"All your lil homies got you... We love the hell outta you," Howard wrote in the caption of the heartwarming video.
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Smollett has been caught in the middle of massive controversy after he was charged with felony disorderly conduct for allegedly filing a false police report, after Chicago P.D. delivered evidence that he may have played a role in his own attack.
The actor, who has played the role of Jamal Lyon on the FOX drama since its debut, has maintained his innocent throughout the ordeal. He recently surrounded to Chicago police and was released on bond later Thursday.
Howard's support for his co-star comes as reports had surfaced claiming some members of the cast and crew are "furious" and feel the actor should be fired from the show.
The cast members reportedly feel "hurt and embarrassed" after defending Smollett following his initial claim in January that he was a victim go a hate crime. The report by TMZ also claimed that "almost everyone" on set of the FOX drama is worried how the scandal will affect the series.
Empire producers — Lee Daniels, Danny Strong, Brett Mahoney, Brian Grazer, Sanaa Hamri, Francie Calfo and Dennis Hammer — also recently announced Smollett would be dropped from the last two episodes of Season 5 to avoid further disruptions to production as the case unfolds.
"The events of the past few weeks have been incredibly emotional for all of us. Jussie has been an important member of our Empire family for the past five years and we care about him deeply. While these allegations are very disturbing, we are placing our trust in the legal system as the process plays out," the statement read.
"We are also aware of the effects of this process on the cast and crew members who work on our show and to avoid further disruption on set, we have decided to remove the role of 'Jamal' from the final two episodes of the season."
After being released, Smollett's legal team issued a statement on recent events, reiterating the actor's innocence.0comments
"Today we witnessed an organized law enforcement spectacle that has no place in the American legal system. The presumption of innocence, a bedrock in the search for justice, was trampled upon at the expense of Mr. Smollett and notably, on the eve of a Mayoral election. Mr. Smollett 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," the statement read.
Photo credit: 20th Century FOX