Joel Smollett may not be a well-known name in the film and television industry, but he is certainly a successful man in the business. He is not an actor, but he has invested so much in the film industry through his children. One of them is the award-winning actor Jussie Smollett, best known as Jamal Lyon after his role in the critically acclaimed TV series Empire. Jussie is not the only one of his family to be in the entertainment business, but the entire Smollett family.
Choosing a career is often not an easy task, but when you have a Joel Smollett as a father, you’re sure to make the best choice. We often hear about celebrities whose career choice was strongly opposed by their parents, such as Katty Perry and Jennifer Lawrence, but the opposite seems to be the case with the Smollett, where not one or two, but all children are a product of the father’s career choice.
Despite his passing, the Smollett will always be grateful that they followed his guidelines. To learn more about Joel Smollet, here are the facts we have for you.
Joel Smollett – Biography
Born on 8 October 1956, Joel Smollett was the son of Peter Smollett and Molly Hirschenson. He has Polish and Russian nationality and belongs to the Ashkenazi-Jewish ethnic group. His grandparents are Dawley Levy and David Smollett. The Smollett family has its roots in Russia, Romania, and Poland, but his grandparents were Roman Jewish immigrants. Not much is known about Joel’s early years, his educational background and achievements, but his wife Janet once mentioned that he pursued a modeling career. In addition, he worked as a cable splicer before his death in 2015.
Who is Joel Smollett’s wife (Janet Smollett)?
Joel Smollett married his wife Janet Smollett (née Harris), an African-American woman he met while working for civil rights in the Bay Area. At that time Janet was working with political activists Huey Newton and Bobby Seale. Although it is not clear when the two were officially married, they loved each other and devoted themselves to the good education of their own children. Until his death in 2015, Joel and his wife Janet lived happily together without rumors of their separation.
Janet, who is an American citizen, was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, on November 27, 1952. She once taught with Julian Bond before becoming the leader of a civil rights group. Today she is known as one of the founders of the superhero movie Black Panther. Joel and his wife came into the limelight after the release of a family cookbook called The Family Table. The couple is blessed with six children, namely Jake Smollett, Jojo Smollett, Jurnee Smollett, Jussie Smollett, Jazz Smollett, and Jacqui Smollett. His family became popular after his six children starred in the ABC sitcom On Our Own.
Facts about Jussie Smollett’s father- Joel Smollett
He is the guardian and king of the Smollett family
Joel Smollett is the kind of father who was there for his children from their early years to adulthood. He not only cared for and nurtured his family, but was also a key factor in their careers. After experiencing the fame and financial power associated with show business, Joel was able to use his closeness to his children to motivate them to choose a career, starting with his daughter, Jurnee Smollett, who entered the modeling industry as a toddler and was compared to a mixture of Elizabeth Taylor and Diana Ross. Graceful, his six children are all remarkable personalities in the entertainment industry.
He died of cancer.
Joel Smollett died on 15 January 2015 after a long battle with cancer. He died at the age of 58 and the news of his death was first reported by his actor son, Jussie Smollett. In his tribute to his father on his Instagram page, the Empire actor described his father as the inspiration of the family, asking and champ. He not only guided them on their way to professional success but also taught them to work and help each other.
Even after his death, the members of the Smollett family still do their thing together. A good example is the production company that Jussie, Jazz, and Jurnee founded.
Joel Smollett’s net worth
Joel may not have amassed so much wealth for himself during his lifetime, but after the success of his children, there is no doubt that he died a rich man. One of his celebrity daughters, Jurnee Smollett, is said to have an estimated net worth of $2 million, which she gained mainly from her acting career. Jussie and Joel Smollett also have an estimated net worth of $500,000. The family book, which was published in 2018, serves Joel’s family as an additional source of income. The book, which contains recipes for delicious cuisine with a mixture of incredible culture, sells for $19.79 on Amazon.