“Simpsons” Co-Creator Dying, Giving Away His Fortune
(NEW YORK) — Sam Simon, one of the executive producers and co-creators of The Simpsons, announced this spring that he had terminal colon cancer. According to an interview with Marc Maron on the comic’s podcast back in May, Simon not only broke the news that he was given months to live — but beat that deadline — and explained why he intends to part with nearly all of his fortune.
Simon, who also produced The Drew Carey Show and now even acts as a consultant on Anger Management, was already an active philanthropist before his diagnosis — mostly donating millions to animal rescue, anti-hunger, and environmental charities. However, the diagnosis kicked things up considerably, he tells The Hollywood Reporter.
“The truth is, I have more money than I’m interested in spending,” said Simon. “Everyone in my family is taken care of. And I enjoy this.”
Simon explained residual payments on the animated show gave him more than he could need, even though he left the series early on. “The Simpsons money got bigger and bigger. When I left The Simpsons, no one thought that this thing was going to still be around. It’s the cumulative effect. It’s like, ‘Oh my God, 25 years later, and it’s still coming in.'”
The writer-producer told the trade paper he’ll donate his money until the very end, and has set up charities like his Sam Simon foundation to ensure it’s still disbursed after his death. “One thing is, I get pleasure from it,” he says of giving. “I love it. I don’t feel like it is an obligation.”
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