Pretty much everyone who’s ever watched “The Simpsons” knows that they sprung mostly formed out of Matt Groening’s head over 20 years ago — but what they may be less familiar with is the name Sam Simon, who co-created the series. Simon left in 1993 (though he still gets an executive producer credit) to pursue other TV options and philanthropic endeavors, but as he told The Hollywood Reporter (photo from the article Tweeted by Simon below), he’s about to step up giving away as much money as he can. Why? He’s been diagnosed with terminal colon cancer.
The 58-year-old nine-time Emmy winner, who currently consults on “Anger Management,” announced his diagnosis on Marc Maron’s “WTF” podcast back in May, saying he had been told he had between three and six months to live. He also added that he would donate nearly all of his “Simpsons” royalties to charity. (He is unmarried and has no children.)
As he told THR, he had no idea money from “The Simpsons” would still be coming in 25 years later. “(It) got bigger and bigger,” he said.
Simon was solidly behind many charities even before his diagnosis; he founded the Sam Simon Foundation to assist needy humans and stray dogs; he has a PETA center in Norfolk, Va. named after him; global marine conservation group Sea Shepherd Conservation Society named one of its four vessels after him — and that’s just a start.
But now, he says, “We are going to expand all this stuff (in the Sam Simon Foundation). (It) is going to be very well endowed, and there’s a lot of stuff I want them to do.”
As for his health, it’s a day-by-day situation. He said he’s still undergoing chemotherapy treatment, though he gets “every possible side effect — fatigue, nausea … so today and tomorrow are like, my two good days for the month. So I’m feeling pretty good today, and, you know, we shall see.”
Read the full interview here.