Arts & Entertainment

Mr. Burns returns: Harry Shearer back on 'The Simpsons' voice cast after contract dispute

A screenshot of
A screenshot of "The Simpsons" character Mr. Burns.

Fox announced in a press release Tuesday that Harry Shearer would return to "The Simpsons" for the next two seasons, despite a contract dispute that left him officially out of the cast as of May.

Shearer said at the time that he was told via producer James L. Brooks' lawyer that the show would go on without him. Shearer attributed the dispute to being over having the right to pursue other projects. Responding on Twitter Tuesday, Shearer says that his new contract gives him the right to pursue those projects.

Tweet to @MikeRoe

Shearer also re-affirmed his previous statements that the dispute wasn't over money.

"The Simpsons" showrunner Al Jean also apologized on Twitter for what he described as a misunderstanding with Shearer, and expressed gratitude that Shearer was returning.

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The news leaves Ted Cruz out of luck — the Republican presidential candidate made a joking audition tape for "The Simpsons" with BuzzFeed last week, including auditioning for iconic Shearer characters Mr. Burns and Ned Flanders.

Cruz responded to the announcement of Shearer's return:

Ted Cruz tweet