Showrunner Brett Mahoney revealed to TVLine that there have been discussions about bringing Smollett back to the show.
“It would be weird in my mind to end this family show and this family drama of which he was such a significant part of without seeing him,” Mahoney said, adding, “It’s fair to say it’s being discussed, but there’s no plan as of yet to bring him back. There’s been no decision made.”
Smollett’s character Jamal Lyon was written off of the final two episodes of Season 5 after he was accused of staging a racist and homophobic attack against himself in late January in Chicago. The City of Chicago is suing Smollett to recoup the costs of the investigation. He filed a countersuit against the city, his alleged co-conspirators the Osundairo brothers and several officials, including former Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson.
Meanwhile, Jussie’s “Empire” castmates have publicly supported him and have expressed their hope for his return to the FOX music drama.
“I was so proud of that young man that played my son, because he still loved me at the end of it. And all he wanted to do was get closer to me,” Terrence Howard said during a September appearance on the “Late Late Show with James Corden.” “Then out of nowhere, you know, he’s snatched away from us. So it’s like now he was the heart of our show, and now it’s like our show is on a heart and lung bypass machine because the heart is gone, but we’re still hoping that there’s going to be a transplant, and hoping somehow it will come back together.”
“Empire” will air its final 10 episodes next year.