Former NFL star Michael Oher, subject of the book and movie, “The Blind Side”, alleges that the couple who took him in as a teenager misled him into believing they were adopting him and instead placed him in a conservatorship, according to a court filing. “The lie of Michael’s adoption is one upon which Co-conservators Leigh Anne Tuohy and Sean Tuohy have enriched themselves at the expense of their Ward, the undersigned Michael Oger,” the petition to terminate the conservatorship in Shelby County Court in Tennessee.
The Tuohys negotiated a deal with the 20th Century Fox that left Oher without any payment for the rights to his name, likeness, and life story while the Tuohy family received a contract price of $225,000 in addition to 2.5% of the film’s net proceeds, the petition states. The film had grossed over $300 million and a $200,000 donation was also made to Leigh Anne Tuohy’s charitable foundation.
According to the petition, Oher made no money from the film which was released after he complete his college career and would not have impacted his NCAA eligibility. In addition, Oher does not recall signing the agreement for the rights to his life story. The document has a signature that appears to be his, but “nobody ever represented this document to him with any explanation”.
His petition accuses the Tuohys of a breach of their duty as conservators so gross and appalling that they should be sanctioned by this court”. Oher was a ward of the ate of Tennessee by the age of 11 and was homeless as a child. A friend’s father helped Oher enroll in Briarcrest Christian School in 2002, where Oher played both basketball and football.
“Where other parents of Michael’s classmates saw Michael simply as a nice kid in need, Conservators Sean Tuohy and Leigh Anne Tuohy saw something else: A gullible young man whose athletic talent could be exploited for their own benefit”, the petition said.
For the unversed, The Blind Side’s release coincided with Mr. Oher’s start in the National Football League, where he played eight seasons, most prominently with the Baltimore Ravens. The film earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture and won Sandra Bullock in the role of Leigh Anne Tuohy, her only Academy Award.
Courtesy – www.indiatvnews.com