Sunday, October 10, 2010

Newsy: Voice of 'Dora the Explorer' Sues Nickelodeon

Caitlin Sanchez started voicing Nickelodeon’s hit animated series when she was 12-years old, but was dismissed from the show due to her change in voice.

It seems Dora’s days of exploring are over -- that is, the actress who plays her. Caitlin Sanchez started voicing Nickelodeon’s hit animated series, Dora the Explorer when she was twelve-years old, but was dismissed from the show due to her change in voice.

According to ABC, Sanchez filed a very grown-up multimillion-dollar lawsuit against Nickelodeon, MTV Networks and Viacom for issues unrelated to her changing vocal cords: “According to her, when she was just twelve-years-old she and her family were forced into signing a 14-page contract, without the aid of a lawyer, they made her sign it in 22 minutes, without time to view the contract and they basically, according to her, said if you don’t do this and sign it immediately we’ll pass on Caitlin for the part of Dora.”

In addition, the suit claims Sanchez was underpaid when it came to traveling costs, receiving a stipend of $40 a day. For being such a successful show, MSNBCwonders why her contract wasn’t reviewed during her time with the company: “She signed this contract in 2007, Dora the Explorer has been on air for ten years. How old is she? She was twelve when she signed in 2007. So one would think that they knew the popularity of the show and what should be in the contract and you’d have the right people to look over that, but she’s claiming that she should have gotten a better deal.”

Her attorney claims the network owes Sanchez millions in promotional revenue. E! Online quotes her lawyer saying the network ignored the opportunity to negotiate: "Caitlin and her family hoped to resolve their concerns short of filing any complaint, but were unfortunately forced to sue when they believed that Nickelodeon was not engaged in good faith discussions.”

A Nickelodeon spokesperson calls the claims quote “baseless” and as WBAL reports, released the actress solely due to her deep voice: “Sanchez was dropped from the Dora role after Nickelodeon said the girl’s voice had changed. Nickelodeon released a statement saying, while she was under contract Sanchez was well compensated and all working conditions meet union requirements.”

One blogger for Babble thinks differently, saying the network was already looking for a new actress before the lawsuit was even filed: “It sounds to me like this is a classic case of a young girl and her parents being disgruntled that Dora The Explorer, (a.k.a. their meal ticket) was ready to move on to another voice than Caitlin Sanchez.”

Approximately 1.9 million viewers tune into Dora the Explorer, now marking its 10th year on TV.

Writer: Matthew Hibbard

No copyright infringement intended. For educational, non-commercial purposes only.

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