Here’s Everything You Need To Know About “The Blind Side” Scandal And Why Sandra Bullock Is Being Vehemently Defended Online

No, Sandra Bullock is not responsible for the allegations surrounding the real-life woman she portrayed in The Blind Side.

Michael Oher is a retired NFL player who is best known for being the subject of the 2009 movie The Blind Side, which is based on a book of the same name.

Michael Oher speaking during an NFL press conference

The Academy Award-winning film depicts Michael’s journey from being a Black teenager experiencing homelessness to a football star after he was adopted by a wealthy white family, the Tuohys, in Tennessee back in 2004.

The Tuohys smile for a photo

But on Monday, Michael filed a petition in a Tennessee probate court that alleges that Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy never actually adopted him.

Michael Oher on the sideline of a football game

Instead, the legal filing claims that once Michael turned 18 the couple "tricked him into signing a document making them his conservators, which gave them legal authority to make business deals in his name."

Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy at the Oscars

In short, Michael has alleged that the Tuohys faked his adoption to exploit him for financial gain, and that the conservatorship allowed them to negotiate the movie deal that secured royalties for them and their two birth children, Collins and SJ Tuohy, while Michael went without.

Collins, Leigh Anne, and Sean Tuohy

He claims that he received no compensation for The Blind Side; a movie “that would not have existed without him.” The film grossed over $300 million globally, and Michael’s petition alleges that each of the four members of the Tuohy family earned $225,000 as well as 2.5% of the film's “defined net proceeds.”

The Tuohys and some cast members of the Blind Side take a group photo

Michael is said to have only learned the truth about his supposed adoption in February of this year, which is why he is now taking legal action to end the conservatorship, issue an injunction that prevents the Tuohys from using his name and likeness from now on, and establish what the family owes him financially.

Closeup of Michael Oher

The Tuohys previously claimed that they didn’t make much money from the movie, and instead got a “flat fee” for their story. Leigh Anne and Sean also said that any money they did earn was divided “five ways.”

Closeup of Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy

In addition to the profits from the movie, Michael has claimed that the family allowed both him and the general public to believe that they’d legally adopted him “to gain financial advantages for themselves and the foundations which they own or which they exercise control.”

Closeup of Michael Oher

The Tuohys used the publicity around them to promote their foundation, Making It Happen, and Leigh Anne has also worked as an author and speaker off the back of her association with Michael.

A close up of Leigh Anne Tuohy

Sean has said that he and his family are “devastated” by Michael’s claims, and that they find the allegations “insulting.” He told the Daily Memphian: “It's upsetting to think we would make money off any of our children. But we're going to love Michael at 37 just like we loved him at 16.”

The Tuohys with Michael

Sean also maintained that “everybody in the family,” including Michael, got an equal share of what little money they did make from the movie, which was only “about $14,000 each.”

The fictional Tuohys and Michael take a Christmas photo in a scene from the film

Needless to say, the legal battle has caused a stir online, and those involved in The Blind Side have also come under scrutiny off the back of the allegations — particularly Sandra Bullock, who won a Best Actress Oscar, Golden Globe, and SAG Award for her performance as Leigh Anne in the movie.

Screenshot from "The Blind Side"

Taking to social media, some have claimed that Sandra should now return her Oscar as they criticized the star for not speaking out on the scandal.

Sandra Bullock holding her Oscar

“So Sandra Bullock should have to give back her Oscar right, and man do we need to start checking these good feeling stories,” one person tweeted.

Twitter @BigVanillaFunny / Via Twitter: @BigVanillaFunny

Another wrote: “Sandra Bullock better have something to say in the next couple of days or Ima start looking at her different.” Someone else echoed: “I feel like Sandra Bullock need to come make a statement atp like I need an apology.”

Matthew Sharpe/Getty Images / Twitter @Raheem_Martin / Via Twitter: @Raheem_Martin

Twitter @IsntThatBAWSE / Via Twitter: @IsntThatBAWSE

However, many have leapt to the actor’s defense and pointed out that the real-life allegations behind her onscreen portrayal are nothing to do with her.

Sandra Bullock and Leigh Anne Tuohy smiling for a photo

The criticism has also been branded particularly bad taste as it was revealed last week that Sandra’s long-term partner Bryan Randall had died on Aug. 5 after a private three-year battle with ALS.

Bryan Randall and Sandra Bullock

“Sandra just lost her partner and now y'all demanding she return her Oscar bc of what the character she played in a movie did in real life?! Are y'all unwell?” one person tweeted.

Twitter @chrissy_kreme10 / Via Twitter: @chrissy_kreme10

“Sandra bullock’s partner, who she has been taking care of while he suffered from als, just died. i’m sure she will but y’all are weird for your first thought to be calling on her to make a statement about a very disturbing revelation that i highly doubt she knew anything about,” someone else wrote.

Twitter @dianelyssa / Via Twitter: @dianelyssa

“Bruh Sandra Bullock is not responsible for what that white woman and her husband did in real life. Are y’all 5 years old?” another popular tweet reads.

Twitter @PrinceHAK33M / Via Twitter: @PrinceHAK33M

And Quinton Aaron, who plays Michael Oher in the movie, has also thrown his support behind Sandra, telling TMZ Sports that there is no reason for his costar to comment on the scandal.

Sandra Bullock and Quinton Aaron at a media event

"To make a statement like that doesn't make any sense," Quinton said. "Sandra Bullock didn't have anything to do with the real story that we're reading as of right now."

Screenshot from "The Blind Side"

"She gave a brilliant performance," he went on. “And that shouldn't be tarnished for something that had nothing to do with her."

Skip to footer