Jussie Smollett has had his fair share of scandal since being found guilty of making false reports, claiming to be a victim of a hate crime in January 2019. Now, the former “Empire” star is stepping back into a positive light with his directorial debut.

The film, titled B-Boy Blues, is an adaptation of James Earl Hardy’s novel. The book focuses on the lives of gay Black men in New York City.

BET+ will air the movie on June 9, just in time for Pride Month. Devin Griffin (BET+ exec VP/GM) said, “Through our content slate, we are intentional about representing the fullness of the Black experience, including that of the LGBTQ+ community.” He continued, “B-Boy Blues is an artful, heart-rending film about the complexity of love – something we all can relate to.”

The film’s cast will include award-winning singer and actress ​​Ledisi, Brandee Evans (“P-Valley”), Broderick Hunter (“Insecure”) and many more. Timothy Richardson (“David Makes Man”) and Thomas Mackie will take on the lead roles. Television producer Mona Scott-Young is on board with her company, Monami Entertainment.

Young spoke highly of the project, saying, “B-Boy Blues is a beautifully bold, funny, heartwarming bro-mance and I was thrilled to partner with Jussie to help this wonderful film gain greater exposure.” She continued, “Falling head over heels and fighting for love are universal emotions and experiences and we are so grateful to BET+ for shining a powerful spotlight on the still seriously underrepresented black LGBTQ+ community and bringing this impactful love story to an even greater audience.”

Smollett helped to write the movie’s script with Hardy and also financed it with the help of a Cleveland-based investor named Tom Wilson. The indie project won the Narrative Feature Fan Favorite Award when it debuted at the 2021 American Black Film Festival.

In a past post announcing their excitement for being accepted into the film fest, the movie’s official Instagram account said, “We hope you guys are ready, because we are.”