Host Hopes Jussie Smollett Wins NAACP Image Award this weekend

Jussie Smollett is nominated to win an award this end of the week—and it’s not for “Most Brazen Hoax.” Instead, the Empire star has been nominated for a NAACP Image Award, and host Anthony Anderson says he trusts Smollett will win at Saturday’s ceremony in Hollywood. “I hope to see him here,” Anderson tells Variety. “I hope he wins. I’m happy for him that the system worked for him in his favor because the system isn’t always fair, especially for people of color.” Prosecutors in Illinois sparked outrage earlier this week by dropping all charges against Smollett while admitting that they believe the actor staged a hate-crime attack on himself in late January.

Smollett has been nominated in the Image Awards’ Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series category four times, including this year, and won in 2017, CBS reports. “I hope he wins because I’d be interested to hear his speech,”Anderson says. It’s not clear whether Smollett will attend the ceremony, but he’s in the right part of the country: TMZ reports that the actor arrived at Los Angeles International Airport Wednesday night, where he ignored questions from reporters as security guards escorted him to a car.