“Empire” star Trai Byers has addressed the rumors that he wants to quit the hit Fox drama.
The 32-year-old actor, a graduate of the Yale School of Drama, was rumored to be a “diva on set” and “wanted out” of the series because “the character is beneath him,” reported New York Post’s “Page Six” column. Byers plays Andre Lyon, son of “Empire” CEO Lucious Lyon (Terrence Howard) on the show.
Byers took to social media to address the tabloid’s report, calling it a work of fiction.
“I don’t normally spend my time dispelling rumors, but there is something I’d like to address,” he wrote on Instagram. “I have nothing but love and respect for ‘Empire’ and all who are involved on the show. I have a fabulous relationship with Fox, and hold myself to the highest standards professionally.”
In addition to shooting down the story about his unhappiness at work, the Kansas City, Kansas-bred talent also took aim at the unnamed insiders who the paper claimed they spoke with.
“How could I think of demanding something larger than Andre, where I get to express a man with bipolar disorder, who is on a spiritual journey to find his identity? I’m so proud, so happy, and so lucky to be a part of this cast. This show has started my career. See you in Season Three!” his post concluded.
In addition to the role on “Empire” making Byers a household name, the actor also met his fiancé, “Empire” co-star Grace Gealey while working on the show.
The couple confirmed their engagement in October 2015.
“Empire,” which has officially been renewed for season three, returns for the second half of season two on March 30.