Voiceover actor blasts 'Simpsons'

Aug. 10, 2004 at 1:24 PM

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 10 (UPI) -- Harry Shearer, who voices Mr. Burns, Smithers and Ned Flanders on "The Simpsons," reportedly said the Fox TV U.S. animated series has run its course.

"It makes me sad," Shearer said of the popular series in Tuesday's New York Post.

"Simpsons'" producers have dismissed Shearer's complaints, saying he's sore because his characters have smaller parts than in past seasons.

"I don't know why I have to defend the quality of the show to Harry Shearer ... he's a guy who's been a malcontent, in my view. For someone earning millions off the show this year ... I just think it's unfathomable for him to take a shot at us," said Al Jean, "The Simpsons" veteran producer.

Shearer, indeed, is unhappy about his characters' roles.

"They used to have whole scenes. ... Fortunately, I'm doing a lot of other things," Shearer said.

Shearer and his co-stars reportedly earn more than $250,000 an episode.

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