photo jusel.jpg

For the first time, “Empire” star Jussie Smollett addresses his sexual orientation while chopping it up backstage with daytime talk show host Ellen DeGeneres. Find out what he said inside…

Since FOX’s new hip hopera “Empire” took over the small screen, many have been wondering if the middle Jamal Lyon —played by Jussie Smollett—is gay in real life.

The burning question has come up in interviews before. During a sitdown with Sway Calloway for his satellite radio show, Jussie was asked about his sexual preference where he said he preferred not to discuss his personal life.

Soon after Jussie’s interview, his “Empire” co-star Malik Yoba seemingly let the cat out of the bag, confirming Jussie was, in fact, gay. Malik has since tried to backtrack his comment, stating his words were misquoted and that he was referring to Jussie’s character, not Jussie’s personal life. Hmph.

Now, Jussie is finally addressing the issue. The talented star met up with Ellen DeGeneres backstage after taping a segment for “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” where he addresses the rumors surrounding his sexuality.

The 31-year-old actor opened up saying,

“There is no closet. There’s never been a closet that I’ve been in. I don’t own a closet, I got a dresser, but I don’t have a closet. But I have a home and that is my responsibility, to protect that home.”

He continued,

“So that’s why I choose not to talk ‘bout my personal life. But there is without a doubt, no closet that I’ve ever been in, and I just wanted to make that clear, but it was most important for me to make that clear to you on your show at this time in the world. And that’s where I’m at.”

The new Columbia Records signee said Ellen (who is gay) is a big inspiration to him and that he admires the work she has put in for the LGBT community. He said,

“What you’ve done within the LGBT community is very much, in my opinion, kind of like what Michael Jackson did with the black community. Just that, you are who you are. You’re just Ellen. So it was really important to me to make sure that it got across that there is no closet.”

He ended the conversation saying,

“Boom! Now y’all don’t even gotta ask no more.”

Well there you have it.

Peep the clip below:

Photo: Michael Rozman/Warner Bros

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