Legal action taken by former NFL player Michael Oher against the Tuohys has brought attention back to the wealthy Memphis family depicted in the acclaimed 2009 film “The Blind Side.”
Oher, who won a Super Bowl championship in 2013 with the Baltimore Ravens, went to court this week to put an end to the lengthy conservatorship that the Tuohys have in his name. He submitted his petition on Monday.
The former NFL player alleged that he agreed to the conservatorship after having been led to believe that it was a form of adoption because of his age. He also claimed that the family largely profited off “The Blind Side” while he did not.
The Tuohys, through attorneys, have publicly pushed back on Oher’s allegations as “ridiculous.” On Wednesday, their legal counsel indicated the couple would cease the conservatorship, the Associated Press reported.
Amid the ongoing conflict, FOX Business takes a look at the Tuohy family empire. A lawyer for the Tuohys declined to comment.
In 2019, he and his family received $213 million through multiple deals to off-load most of those restaurants, according to the outlet. The divestment, which came many years after he started in franchising, also included the sale of 55 pieces of real estate.
He didn’t part ways with all of his franchises, however, holding on to nearly a dozen Florida Taco Bell locations, the Franchise Times reported.
‘Blind Side’ movie
Hollywood made “The Blind Side” movie in late 2009, with the flick seeing worldwide gross ticket sales of $309 million, according to Box Office Mojo. The film has a cast that includes Sandra Bullock as Leigh Anne Tuohy, Tim McGraw as Sean Tuohy and Quinton Aaron as Oher.
Fox News reported Oher’s allegation that the amount of money each member of the Tuohy family saw from the movie came in at $225,000, compared to none for him. They also got 2.5% of the proceeds, he said.
Michael Lewis, the author of “The Blind Side” book, recently said to the Washington Post that the Tuohys saw about $350,000 worth of profits, the same amount that he did. Oher allegedly declined his share of royalty checks, which Lewis said he thought had prompted them to put the checks in a trust designated for the former NFL player’s son, he told the outlet.
He and the Tuohys also shared a $250,000 payment from the studio for optioning the story that the family of four then spread evenly among themselves and Oher, Lewis reportedly told the Washington Post.
Tuohy family lawyers have said about $100,000 from the movie went to each of the Tuohy family members and Oher, according to the Associated Press.
The Tuohy couple has authored a book – “In a Heartbeat: Sharing the Power of Cheerful Giving” – that made it onto the New York Times Best Sellers list.
Leigh Anne Tuohy has another book titled “Turn Around: Reach Out, Give Back, and Get Moving.” Her website describes it as a “five-day-per-week devotional.”
Making it Happen Foundation
The Making it Happen Foundation, a nonprofit started by the Tuohys post-“The Blind Side,” operates with a mission to “promote awareness, provide hope and improve the standard of living and quality of life for all children fighting to survive in the invisible cracks of our society.” It is based in Memphis.
In 2022, the charity disbursed $20,147 in contributions, according to a form it must file with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on a yearly basis and was published by ProPublica. Those contributions went toward providing attire for children, helping with expenses at an elementary school and supporting a girls running team.
Making it Happen has a five-person board of directors that includes Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy, their two adult children, Sean and Collins, and another person, per its website. The IRS form for the charity indicated that none of them had compensation in 2022.
The couple does motivational speaking, according to Leigh Anne Tuohy’s website.
Her site also indicated that their motivational speeches include discussions of their time with Oher and other personal experiences. She seeks to help audiences “recognize the full potential of individuals in their community” with her talks, per the UTA Speakers website.
Sean Tuohy also “speaks on topics from finance, to giving, to valuing people correctly,” according to her website.
They have reportedly delivered speeches to large companies, religious groups and others.
Fox New Digital’s Paulina Dedaj and Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report.