While Homer and Bart Simpson might be glad to see the back of Mr. Burns, Ned Flanders, Principal Skinner, and Reverend Lovejoy, can the show survive without the man who voices them and at least 20 other recurring characters? Harry Shearer, who has voiced an impressive range of characters on The Simpsons for 26 seasons, is leaving the show, which Fox recently renewed for two more seasons, Variety reports. His other regular characters include Otto, Smithers, and Dr. Hibbert, as well as more rarely seen ones like Satan, Adolf Hitler, Bill Clinton, and George Bush, according to his website.
Shearer appears to be leaving over a contract dispute: In a series of tweets last night, he quoted producer James L. Brooks as saying "show will go on, Harry will not be part of it, wish him the best." Shearer added: "This because I wanted what we've always had: the freedom to do other work" and thanked Simpsons fans for their support. Trouble seems to have been brewing for a while, the Hollywood Reporter notes: He was the only holdout in recent negotiations and tweeted "Doesn't this show have a cast?" after the renewal was announced last week. (Check out 14 interesting facts about The Simpsons.)