The voice of animated pre-pubescent has lawyered up. Caitlin Sanchez, the 14-year-old actress who until recently provided the voice for “Dora the Explorer,” is suing Nickelodeon, MTV Networks and Viacom International for breach of contract. The lawsuit contends Sanchez may have been cheated out of millions of dollars, and that she and her parents were pressured to sign what her lawyer calls a “convoluted and inscrutable” contract.
Nickelodeon issued a statement responding to the suit:
Unfortunately, Caitlin’s voice changed and she was no longer able to portray the Dora character, as happened with the actress who originated the role. Caitlin’s contract was extensively negotiated through her agent and in compliance with her union. She was well compensated for her work and for personal appearances. We have enjoyed working with Caitlin on ‘Dora the Explorer’ these past three years, and we did in fact offer her a contract for other work with us.”
Caitlin and her family responded with a statement of their own today, calling the network’s claim that the actress was offered other work “another egregious lie. The only other work Nickelodeon had ever contractually offer Caitlin was another two-year, exclusive contract to portray Dora the Explorer through June of 2012.” The family has released an audio file of a conversation with Nickelodeon that, if real, appears to back up some of their claims. Ah, Hollywood. It’s no place for children.