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Jussie Smollett Apologizes to ‘Empire’ Cast, Insists He’s Innocent

Hours after his arrest, Jussie Smollett was back to work Thursday night on the Empire set, where he apologized to the cast and crew for the embarrassment caused by the head-spinning allegations against him. However, he insisted that he was innocent and blamed the legal system and the media for his legal troubles. Smollett was taken into custody Thursday morning on suspicion of filing a false police report. Chicago Police later claimed that an alleged attack against him was actually a “publicity stunt” devised by the actor because he wanted a better salary, and he attempted to take “advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career.” CNN reports his fellow cast members were expecting the actor to come clean about what really happened when the meeting was called—but were left shocked when Smollett stuck largely to the statement put out by his lawyers. Smollett is reportedly “on hold” for Friday’s shoot, according to a production schedule seen by the network.