Empire star Terrence Howard broke down while speaking about Jussie Smollett during a recent interview.
“Jussie has been the heart of the show. He’s been my son for six years, and I miss my son,” he said to Extra’s Billy Bush before breaking down in tears. “We can’t help it. This is real life that we’re talking about.”
Howard has been supportive of Smollett following the hate crime hoax scandal and rallied for him to return to the show for the sixth and final season.
Smollett claimed he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack in Chicago where he says he was beaten, had bleach thrown over him and a noose tied around his neck while his assailants were screaming “MAGA country.”
In March he was indicted by a grand jury on 16 counts of disorderly conduct and for allegedly filing a false police report before all 16 charges were dropped and expunged from his record.
A special prosecutor is currently investigating why the charges were dismissed, and the City of Chicago filed a lawsuit against the actor seeking $130,000 in reimbursement to cover overtime worked during his alleged hoax.