Two things you need to know about “Empire” star Jussie Smollett: He ain’t leaving the FOX hit and he plays entirely too much.
A week ago, Smollett, who stars as Jamal Lyon, posted a tweet that suggested he was leaving the series. The cryptic Twitter message read: “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time w/ @EmpireFOX. I love you all. Truth. Time 2 make a record & some movies. #Empire”
Ordinarily, this post would’ve read as a simple, reflective expression of gratitude and career goals. Ordinarily. But, considering that Smollett shared it just hours after “Empire’s” penultimate episode that showed his character getting shot, many wondered if he was hinting at a departure.
Nope, he was just pulling our legs.
Right as the season 2 finale started Wednesday night, Smollett posted this tweet accompanied with a 30-second video addressing last week’s message: “Listen 2 my words…I’ll see y’all season 3. #IAintGoingNoWhere #IAintNoDumbHo #StillIRise #EmpireFinale #empire”
He also posted this second message three hours later for those who missed the first: “And that’s all folks. Thanks 4 rolling with us through this season. See you in season 3 come September. Love y’all. #EmpireFinale #Empire”
Several fans responded, posting messages like, “JUSSIEE PLEASE STOP PLAYIN WITH MY HEART LOOVEE UUUU,” “boy I thought you were done with the show ” and “Don’t you scare me like that ever again!!”
It seems that “Empire” and Smollett fans can rest easily now. But, if Smollett did leave, he wouldn’t be the first star to walk away from a hit series to focus on other entertainment-related pursuits.
Katherine Heigl (“Grey’s Anatomy”), David Caruso (“NYPD Blue”), Topher Grace (“That ’70s Show”), Shelley Long (“Cheers”) and Dan Stevens (“Downton Abbey”) are among the long list of actors who’ve left top-rated TV shows to become big screen stars. Sadly, many people struggle to recall a hit film they’ve starred in since abandoning their shows, which continued to do well without them.
Since Smollett isn’t leaving “Empire” any time soon, it seems he won’t be met with the same fate (and even if he did leave, are we sure he would?). Unlike some of his peers, at least he knows which side of his bread is buttered.
Watch the “Empire” season 2 finale below to learn exactly what happened with Jamal since he didn’t die, which couple entered into “unholy” matrimony and which Lyon may actually leave the pride (it’s down to three — one I hinted at last week!).
“Empire” returns for a third season this fall. Catch up on past episodes here.
WATCH NOW: “Empire” season 2 finale