‘Empire’s Jussie Smollett On His Favorite Lee Daniels Memory

Jussie Smollett Lee Daniels
Jussie Smollett Lee Daniels

While Empire has a lot of star-power behind it, the hit TV series also launched many careers — notably Jussie Smollett’s singing and acting career. The actor and musician has been in demand since the show debuted in 2015, performing at places like the Billboard Music Awards, Pitbull’s New Year’s Revolution, and even Taraji and Terrence’s White Hot Holidays. Recently, Jussie Smollett shared his favorite memory of Empire co-creator Lee Daniels at the ninth annual BET Honors in Washington, D.C., according to USA Today.

He told the crowd his favorite Daniels memory will always been the day the exec producer told Smollett that he got the part of Jamal on Empire. “Lee texted me and he said it’s capital Y, capital O, capital U and I said, ‘Lee,’ and he said, ‘Yes, Jussie,’ and that’s when I found out I got the role,” Smollett shared on the red carpet of the event, reported USA Today. “That’s the thing about Lee. He’s so old-school Hollywood, you know? He loves to give you a good story to tell.”

A photo posted by Jussie Smollett (@jussiesmollett) on Feb 17, 2016 at 9:27pm PST

Daniels is known for his Oscar-nominated movies, such as The Butler and Precious. He also advised Smollett on his career as well, reported USA Today.

“I keep saying this but he’s changed my life in ways that no one will ever be able to understand — until I write a book,” he said. “As a man, he’s changed my life in a huge, huge way. He’s firmly made me plant my feet in the ground and walk in my truth.”

“Just tell the truth,” Smollett continues. “That’s it. You know, it’s so simple. The thought of it is so simple, but it’s so hard to do sometimes. That’s what Lee is about. That’s what his art is about. He represents that.”

A photo posted by Jussie Smollett (@jussiesmollett) on Feb 19, 2016 at 4:25pm PST

As for what we can all expect from the rest of Empire Season 2, Smollett said on-screen mom Taraji P. Henson has been slap-happy: “I will say we will all get slapped up. Each one of us, each brother gets at least one more slap, trust me, because Taraji (Henson) just likes to throw in slaps in the middle of rehearsal.”

And while in D.C., Smollett met First Lady Michelle Obama and we should all be jealous.

What do you think about Jussie Smollett and Lee Daniels relationship? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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