"Empire" actor Jussie Smollett leaves Cook County jail after posting bond on Feb. 21. Photo: Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images
Actor Jussie Smollett has been cut from the final 2 episodes of the fifth season of "Empire," after he was arrested and charged with filing a false police report about an alleged hate crime.
"While these allegations are very disturbing, we are placing our trust in the legal system as the process plays out. We are also aware of the effects of this process on the cast and crew members who work on our show and to avoid further disruption on set, we have decided to remove the role of 'Jamal' from the final two episodes of the season."— "Empire" producers in as statement
The backdrop: Smollett was released on $100,000 bail on Friday after police determined that he had staged his own attack for publicity. Smollett reportedly apologized to the cast of "Empire," but maintained that he was innocent and plans to fight the charges in court.