Sarine Pridgen

Written by Sarine Pridgen

Modified & Updated: 30 May 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith


Jussie Smollett is a well-known figure in the entertainment industry, best known for his role in the hit television series “Empire.” However, he gained even more attention in early 2019 for a highly controversial incident that made headlines around the world. What started as an alleged hate crime against him quickly turned into a complex legal and media spectacle that captivated audiences everywhere. While the incident might be the first thing that comes to mind when hearing his name, there is much more to Jussie Smollett than meets the eye. In this article, we will delve deeper into his life, career, and the facts that surround him. From his early days in the industry to his rise to fame and the aftermath of the controversy, here are 31 intriguing facts about Jussie Smollett that will shed light on his journey in the world of celebrity.

Key Takeaways:

  • Jussie Smollett, known for his role in “Empire,” is a talented actor, singer, and activist. Despite controversies, he continues to inspire others through his music and advocacy work.
  • With a love for music, cooking, and fashion, Jussie Smollett’s vibrant personality shines through. His resilience and dedication to his craft make him a role model for many.
Table of Contents

31 Facts about Jussie Smollett

Jussie Smollett garnered significant attention and controversy in recent years. Let’s delve into 31 intriguing facts about the actor and musician.

Jussie Smollett is an American actor, singer, and songwriter.

Known for his role as Jamal Lyon in the hit TV show “Empire,” Smollett has also made a name for himself as a talented musician.

He was born on June 21, 1982, in Santa Rosa, California.

Smollett’s birthdate falls under the zodiac sign of Cancer, known for their emotional depth and creativity.

Jussie comes from a talented family.

His siblings, Jurnee Smollett and Jake Smollett, are also accomplished actors, making their mark in the entertainment industry.

He began his acting career at a young age.

Smollett started acting in commercials and later transitioned to television and film roles.

Smollett gained widespread recognition for his portrayal of Jamal Lyon.

Playing the talented singer-songwriter in “Empire,” he showcased his musical prowess and acting skills, earning critical acclaim.

He released his debut album, “Sum of My Music,” in 2018.

Immersed in R&B and soul, Smollett’s album showcased his vocal talents and songwriting abilities.

Smollett identifies as gay.

He has been an advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and used his platform to raise awareness about important social issues.

In 2019, Smollett faced a highly publicized controversy.

He claimed to be a victim of a hate crime, but the subsequent investigation led to accusations of staging the incident.

The charges against Smollett were eventually dropped.

Many legal complexities surrounded the case, resulting in the charges being dismissed in a controversial decision.

Smollett’s lawsuit against the city of Chicago was dismissed.

After the incident, he filed a lawsuit against the city, but it was later dismissed by a federal judge.

Jussie Smollett was featured on Time magazine’s 2019 list of the 100 most influential people.

Despite the controversy, his impact on the entertainment industry and activism earned recognition.

He is known for his charity work.

Smollett has supported various organizations dedicated to causes such as HIV/AIDS awareness and mental health.

Smollett has a strong social media presence.

He has garnered a large following on platforms like Instagram and Twitter, allowing him to connect with fans and share his thoughts.

He starred in the film “Alien: Covenant” as Ricks.

Smollett showcased his acting skills in the science fiction horror film directed by Ridley Scott.

Jussie Smollett is also an activist.

He has been vocal about issues of racial inequality and has participated in protests and events supporting equal rights.

Smollett received the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series.

His performance in “Empire” was recognized by the prestigious award, further solidifying his talent.

Jussie Smollett has a passion for cooking.

He has shared his love for food through cooking tutorials on his social media platforms.

Smollett has collaborated with notable artists such as Alicia Keys and Janelle Monáe.

His musical collaborations have allowed him to showcase his talent alongside industry icons.

He has spoken openly about his experiences with mental health.

Smollett has been transparent about his struggles and has encouraged others to seek help and support.

Jussie Smollett was honored with the Humanitarian of the Year Award in 2018.

His dedication to charitable endeavors earned him recognition at the Black AIDS Institute’s Heroes in the Struggle Gala.

Smollett has appeared on prominent talk shows.

He has been a guest on shows like “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” and “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” showcasing his charisma and talent.

He was nominated for a BET Award for Best Male R&B/Pop Artist.

Smollett’s musical contributions were acknowledged with this notable nomination.

Smollett’s favorite color is purple.

A color often associated with creativity and individuality, it reflects his unique personality.

He has a close relationship with his siblings.

Jussie shares a strong bond with his sister, Jurnee, and his brother, Jake, supporting each other’s endeavors.

Smollett is an avid reader.

He has shared his love for literature and recommended books to his fans on social media.

He has a tattoo on his chest that reads “I love you H.E.R.”

Jussie Smollett’s tattoo pays tribute to the influential R&B artist H.E.R., showcasing his appreciation for her work.

Smollett is involved in activism for criminal justice reform.

He has been part of campaigns advocating for fair and just treatment within the criminal justice system.

Jussie Smollett has a passion for fashion.

He has showcased his unique sense of style and has been spotted attending various fashion events.

He is a self-proclaimed foodie.

Smollett has shared his love for trying new culinary experiences and exploring different cuisines.

Despite the controversies, Jussie Smollett continues to pursue his career.

He remains determined and focused on his artistic endeavors and making a positive impact.

These 31 facts about Jussie Smollett shed light on his multifaceted personality and the significant milestones of his career. Despite the challenges he has faced, Smollett remains influential in the entertainment industry and has a dedicated following of fans who appreciate his talent and advocacy work.


In conclusion, Jussie Smollett has had a significant impact on both the entertainment industry and society as a whole. Through his talent and activism, he has become a prominent figure in the fight for social justice and equality. Despite the controversy surrounding him, it is important to acknowledge his contributions and remember that everyone deserves a fair chance to tell their side of the story. Jussie Smollett’s journey serves as a reminder that even in the world of celebrities, there are complexities and challenges that we must navigate. Ultimately, it is up to each individual to form their own opinion on Jussie Smollett and the circumstances surrounding his career.


1. What is Jussie Smollett known for?

Jussie Smollett is known for being an actor, singer, and activist. He gained widespread recognition through his role as Jamal Lyon on the hit show “Empire.” He has also been involved in various music projects and has been a vocal advocate for social justice issues.

2. Why is Jussie Smollett controversial?

Jussie Smollett became controversial due to an incident in 2019, where he claimed to have been the victim of a hate crime. However, investigations later revealed inconsistencies in his story, leading to charges of filing a false police report. The case received significant media attention and sparked a heated debate about truth, accountability, and the impact of false accusations.

3. Has Jussie Smollett faced legal consequences?

Yes, Jussie Smollett faced legal consequences for allegedly filing a false police report. In 2019, he was indicted on 16 counts related to the incident, but the charges were later dropped by the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in a controversial decision.

4. How did Jussie Smollett’s career change after the controversy?

The controversy surrounding Jussie Smollett had a significant impact on his career. Following the incident, he was written out of the final episodes of “Empire” and has faced backlash from both the public and the entertainment industry. His future in the industry remains uncertain as he seeks to rebuild his reputation.

5. What is Jussie Smollett doing now?

Jussie Smollett has been relatively low-profile since the controversy. He has made sporadic public appearances, and it is unclear what his next career move will be. He continues to face ongoing legal battles related to the incident.

From Jussie Smollett's rise to fame and his controversial legal battles, celebrities often find themselves entangled in scandals that captivate public attention. Ghislaine Maxwell, known for her association with Jeffrey Epstein, has been at the center of a high-profile case that has gripped headlines worldwide. Her story is one of wealth, power and shocking allegations that have left many questioning the dark underbelly of elite circles. As we delve into the lesser-known aspects of Smollett's life, it's worth exploring the mindblowing facts surrounding Ghislaine Maxwell's scandal that continue to unfold.

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