Jussie Smollett‘s “Empire” father is coming to his defense.
Terrence Howard came out in support of Smollett in an Instagram post, showing the embattled actor playing with Howard’s young son. He captioned the video, “All your lil homies got you… We love the hell outta you ♥️.”
Howard’s defense of Smollett was met with some pushback from fans, which prompted Howard to respond.
“Sorry you feel that way but that’s the only Jussie I know,” Terrence Howard wrote. “The Jussie I know could never even conceive of something so unconscious and ugly.”
He continued, “His innocence or judgment is not for any of us to decide. Stay in your lane and my lane is empathy and love and compassion for someone I’ve called my son for 5 years. It’s God’s job to judge and it’s ours to love and hope, especially for those that we claim to have loved. There’s nothing more harmful than a fake friend! Real talk.”
On Thursday, the producers of “Empire” decided to cut Jussie Smollett from the show’s final two episodes. They announced the decision by saying, “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.”
They continued, “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.”