Jussie Smollet and Yazz came through today on the day of their show Empire's big season finale. Jussie who plays Jamal Lyon and Yazz who plays Hakeem Lyon talked to Angie Martinez about how the show has changed their lives, their newfound fame, and what superstars they want to see come on the show.
Jussie tells Angie that while he was "doing good" right before being called for the role, things were still hard for him. "I worked regular jobs like everybody else," says Jussie. "I was a waiter, a bartender and a clown for children." Yazz tells Angie all about his last "regular job" before landing his role on Empire, which was at a Pizza Hut from where he got fired from for "writing a song while mixing chicken wings in a bowl." His salary? $200 per week.
On their new found fame, Jussie tells Angie that he can't even food shop without bumping into some Empire fans. "It's crazy…there's so much love. You go into whole food and you see a whole truck full of older women….like a church group…and they walk up like 'Jamal' and they can't figure out how to use their camera phone..it's been beautiful," he says.