Ex-NFL star Michael Oher claims in a lawsuit that the adoption story is behind The Blind Side The movie is a lie and that the Tuohy family made millions from his name.
A petition filed in probate court in Shelby County, Tennessee, alleges that Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy, a white couple who took 18-year-old Oher into their home as a high school student did not really adopt him.
However, the athlete’s lawyers say that three months after Oher turned 18 in 2004 they had him sign a document that made them his conservators and that allowed them to make business deals with his name.
Court papers say the couple used their position as conservators to agree a deal that saw them and their two biological children pay for the Oscar-winning film, which starred Sandra Bullock and earned over $300m.
Oher claimed in the petition that he had done nothing for the inspirational story “which would not have existed without him” and that the family continued to refer to him as their adopted son to promote their foundation and Ms Tuohey’s career as a author and motivational speaker, reported. ESPN.
“Michael’s adoption lie is one in which Co-Conservators Leigh Anne Tuohy and Sean Tuohy enrich themselves at the expense of their Ward, the undersigned Michael Oher,” the court documents state.
“Michael Oher discovered this lie to his dismay and shame in February of 2023, when he learned that the Conservatorship he had agreed to on the basis that doing so would make him a member of the Tuohy family, had in fact given him no family ties. the Tuohys.”
Oher asked the court to end the conservatorship and bar them from using his name and likeness. He also wants a full accounting of the money the family makes in his name and be paid a fair share of the profits. He is also seeking an unspecified amount of punitive and compensatory damages.
“Since at least August of 2004, the Conservators have allowed Michael, in particular, and the public, in general, to believe that the Conservators adopted Michael and used that lie to gain financial advantages for themselves and the foundations they own or control,” the petition added.
“All monies thus made shall in all conscience and propriety be forfeited and paid to the said ward, Michael Oher.”