The Empire star Jussie Smollett has broken his social media fast. On Monday, Smollett posted his first picture on Instagram since he was attacked in January. Soon after reporting the attack, police accused Smollett of staging the hate crime, then later dismissed the 16 felony counts against him. Smollett has maintained his innocence.
The 36-year-old posted a clip from Tarell Alvin McCraney's speech about black queerness while introducing his play Choir Boy, at the 2019 Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall Sunday. Choir Boy was up for Best Play. The Tony Awards featured a rainbow carpet this year in honor of Gay Pride Month.
On social media Monday, he wrote: “So much #PRIDE.” Smollett opted to disable comments on the post.
Smollett attended the play’s opening earlier this year and the cast dedicated a performance to him shortly after the attack. During the attack, Smollett reported people “yelling out racial and homophobic slurs.”
After the scandal broke, he was written off of season five of Empire. Last week, the show’s creator Lee Daniels said he would not return for the show’s sixth and final season.