With an ongoing media onslaught surrounding his allegedly faked homophobic attack, ‘Hurt People’ singer Jussie Smollett’s seeing his real life drama hurt the ratings of the scripted drama, ‘Empire.’
Once FOX’s flagship production, the Taraji P. Henson-led series was already steadily declining in viewership ahead of the commotion caused by Smollett – a feat the negative press certainly didn’t help. Just a week after posting its lowest season premiere ratings (mid-season or otherwise), reports now have it ‘Empire’ delivered its lowest figures to date (overall) on its Wednesday (March 20) episode.
The second episode of Empire after the arrest of one of its stars, Jussie Smollett, was the lowest rated in the series’ history.
The March 20 episode scored a 1.1 rating in the 18-49 demo, and was watched by just under 4 million total viewers. Last week’s midseason premiere also struggled, with a 1.3 rating and 4.4 million viewers, which means the show dipped by 11% in the ratings and 10% in total viewership since last week.
The report above surfaced just a day after the show’s creator Lee Daniels took to Instagram to express the “hurt and anger” of Smollett’s cast mates during this difficult time. Click here to hear what he said.