Hank Azaria sues over a character voice

The Simpsons voice actor Hank Azaria is suing actor Craig Bierko over the rights to a character voice — in this case, fictional sports announcer Jim Brockmire. In a lawsuit filed Wednesday and obtained by EW, Azaria filed a complaint for declaratory relief. He claims that he shared the voice character with many other performers over the years, including Bierko. Bierko says he helped to develop the character.

In 2010, the “Jim Brockmire character” gained prominence in a “Funny or Die” video, which allowed Azaria to entertain feature film offers. Then, Bierko claimed “it was he who either:  A.) independently created the Azaria voice, or B.) created it in collaboration with Azaria. Bierko has not been clear as to which of these alternatives he is asserting,” according to the lawsuit.

Azaria wants a “judicial determination of their rights and obligations with respect to the Jim Broadmire Character.”

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