The longtime composer of The Simpsons is suing over his dismissal from the long-running series, saying he was discriminated against because of his age and a perceived disability.
The lawsuit, filed by Alf Clausen, 78, in Los Angeles Superior Court on Monday, alleges age discrimination, wrongful termination and retaliation nearly two years after he says he was fired from composing and conducting all music for The Simpsons.
Clausen’s lawsuit says he was told he was being replaced because the series was “taking the music in a different direction.”
“This reason was pretextual and false,” the claim reads. “Instead, plaintiff’s unlawful termination was due to perceived disability and age.”
According to Variety, the 78-year-old composer was replaced by Bleeding Fingers Music, which is a production company co-founded by Hans Zimmer, Steve Kofsky and Russell Emanuel.
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Clausen’s lawsuit says that his replacement “was substantially younger in age, who was not only paid less, but was not disabled.”
The suit does not specify Clausen’s disability.
The lawsuit names Fox, Disney and James L. Brooks’ Gracie Films as defendants.
The Fox prime-time animated series debuted in 1989. Its 31st season is scheduled to premiere in September.
Clausen scored more than 550 episodes of The Simpsons.
The TV veteran, who also scored other big hits like ALF and Moonlighting and the movies Splash and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, won two Emmys for his work on The Simpsons. He’s also been nominated for an Emmy a staggering 21 times (for The Simpsons) in addition to those two victories and is believed to be the most nominated musician in Emmy history, with 30 nominations in total.
His last work for the animated series was featured in the Season 28 finale, which aired in May 2017.
Fox has not commented on the lawsuit as of this writing.
—With files from the Associated Press and Chris Jancelewicz