While the court of public opinion — not to mention, the actual court — may have ruled against him, the disgraced actor continues to maintain that he didn’t lie about his homophobic attack hoax.
During an appearance on Sway’s SiriusXM show, the Empire alum said his six-day prison stay at Cook County Jail was a cleansing one, noting he’s never felt more sober, blessed, and most importantly, innocent.
Insisting that his morals as a Black gay man made him incapable of orchestrating the hoax, Jussie said:
“If I had done this, I’d be a piece of s**t. And I don’t think that’s really questionable. If I had done something like this, it would mean that I stuck my fist in the pain of black African Americans in this country for over 400 years. It would mean that I stuck my fist in the fears of the LGBTQ community all over the world. I am not that motherf**ker. Never have been. Don’t need to be.”
Looking back at that near-week behind bars, Smollett said he took it as an opportunity to “reset and regain clarity” by fasting:
“My lawyer… he lied when he said I was fasting for lent. I was not fasting for lent. I was fasting because, that’s what we do in my family, we fast for clarity.”
This majestic description of his time in jail doesn’t exactly fall in line with what was reported about it: Jussie allegedly asked to be released citing his COVID risks as an immunocompromised patient before claiming that his incarceration was taking a huge toll on his mental health.
Later in his interview, the 40-year-old questioned the prosecution’s argument for his motivations behind the alleged hoax — that it was done in a bid to raise his public profile — claiming that this rationale didn’t hold up because his career was actually on the upswing before the incident.
“[I] didn’t need some sort of ris[ing] in my career. I was on the up ad up. I was coming from New York from doing a table read from my dream role in a Broadway show. I had just auctioned the rights to the authorized autobiography of Alvin Ailey. I had all of these things that I was creating. There would be no reason for me to do some dumb corny s**t like that, but people are going to believe what they [want to] believe.”
He also claimed that if he were to stage a public hoax, he certainly wouldn’t make himself look like a victim:
“I am an actor, a director, a writer, a producer … If I were to do something, it would not be to look like a victim. It would be to look like, if anything, to look strong.”
The actor went on to share how the public trial not only tanked his career, but has made his internalized homophobia resurface. He confessed:
“I felt like I had just become a f***** [who] got his ass beat, or at least that was what I thought people saw me as.”
Smollett also insisted he felt the need to speak out about the alleged assault because he wanted to help inspire victims who didn’t have the resources to stand up for themselves, adding:
“Do I feel better than anyone else who has been assaulted? Abso-f**king-lutely no, but at the same time, I was just so embarrassed that it happened.”
He was also embarrassed by the responses of certain fellow entertainers who accused him of lying, admitting:
“For whatever reason, I thought people would be like, ‘There is no way he did something like that.’ … I do hold some people accountable… The people that do know me. F**k out of here. That’s some PR bulls**t. And you know who you are. And I will not name names and I love everybody, but I don’t like that.”
Despite all the drama, the actor is already back to work on new projects, and said it will take more than a major legal scandal to stop him from pursuing his dreams.
What do U think about these new remarks? Watch his interview (below) and sound off in the comments.
[Image via YouTube]
Originally published at perezhilton.com