The Empire star is heading to the Aloha State to sing live with the “Without You” singer during three of her upcoming performance dates, and Smollett had nothing but love for working with the best-selling star, who also makes an appearance on the Fox drama this fall.
— Mariah Carey (@MariahCarey) September 30, 2016
“Mariah is just amazing,” the 33-year-old actor told ET backstage at the iHeartRadio Music Festival at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday. He added:
“The support that she’s shown me so far, she absolutely did not have to be as supportive as she is but she has been. It was supposed to be one night only, that sold out in like a couple of hours so they added a second show. That sold out so now we’re gonna do three shows!” he added.
‘Empire’ first look: Mariah Carey hits the studio https://t.co/z5v8Yy8qQs
— TIME (@TIME) September 30, 2016
But performing with Carey and starring on Empire aren’t the only things Smollett has on his plate he’s also been spending a few early mornings sitting in as a guest co-host alongside Kelly Ripa on Live!
“That honestly is just so much fun,” he marveled. “Kelly’s become a good friend since I first went on the show like a year and a half ago so it’s just fun to play with her.”
— Mariah Carey (@MariahCarey) September 29, 2016
However, Smollett said he doesn’t think there’s a permanent future as a long-term co-host on Live! in the cards for him, given the time constraints and pressures of filming his hit Fox drama, in which he stars as singer Jamal Lyon, son of Terrence Howard’s Lucious Lyon.
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“For me, there’s no chance that I would ever be able to do something like that,” Smollett said when asked if he would consider signing on as a full-time Live! co-host. “Jamal kind of takes up my time.”
In August, Smollett spoke about his Empire musical collaboration with Carey back in season two, recounting how the celebrated songstress “landed at 1 a.m. She came into the studio. We were there until seven in the morning, and we just recorded the song, and it was incredible, and I love her.”
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