“Empire” creator Lee Daniels hasn’t said much about the fake hate-crime allegedly staged by series star Jussie Smollett but he took to social media on Wednesday to express his feelings — and did not hold back.
In a video he shared on Instagram, the writer-producer-director spoke out about Smollett, who has pleaded not guilty to 16 counts of disorderly conduct over charges he allegedly paid two brothers to beat him up, tie a noose around his neck, and pour bleach on him to present the appearance of a racist, homophobic attack.
“These past couple of weeks have been a freakin’ roller‐coaster,” Daniels begins.
“We have — me and my cast — have experienced pain and anger and sadness and frustration and really don’t know how to deal with it, you know,” says Daniels in the video.
“This is not what the show was made for,” he adds, expressing his displeasure that Smollett’s scandal is overshadowing “Empire” itself.
“The show was made to bring America together. To talk about the atrocities happening right now in the streets.”