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The PJs Creators Sued

Portland, Oregon-based animation house Will Vinton Studios has been named in a lawsuit brought by a janitor who claims that the creators of the animated series THE PJS used his likeness for one of the characters in the now defunct series. As reported in VARIETY, Tally Collier, a Chicago janitor, is suing (among others) THE PJS creator Eddie Murphy, the show's producers, series' animators Will Vinton Studios and the FOX network, claiming that the character of building superintendent Thurgoode Orenthal Stubbs (voiced by Murphy) was lifted directly from a documentary about janitors in which Collier was featured. Collier believes the documentary made its way to THE PJS producers after it was sent to the Oprah Winfrey show in 1998 by director Daryl Murphy, who reportedly requested Oprah to pass the film along to well known Hollywood figures, including Ron Howard, whose production company Imagine Entertainment is also named in the suit.