Production of the hit series “Two and a Half Men” that made Charlie Sheen the highest-paid actor on television has been suspended. His longtime publicist has quit, and his famous father has compared the 45-year-old actor’s battle with drugs and alcohol to “cancer.” And yet, bunkered in his Los Angeles mansion with the two new loves of his life — a twentysomething self-described porn star and a young model he calls “the goddesses” — Sheen claims he is in complete control of his life.
In a second interview with NBC’s Jeff Rossen that aired on TODAY Tuesday, the actor insisted that the “goddesses” give him all the support he needs. “These women don’t judge me. They don’t judge me. They don’t lead with opinion. They don’t lead with their own needs all the time. They’re honest enough to tell me, ‘Hey, look, you — you know, park your nonsense. You gotta help me solve this.’ And we solve it.”
‘Nothing broken here’
Sheen raised eyebrows — and concerns among fans and substance-abuse experts — with his claims in an interview with Rossen that aired Monday that he had kicked his highly publicized problems with drugs and alcohol by the sheer force of his own will and his declaration of war against the producers of “Two and a Half Men.” Hours later, he summoned Rossen back to the mansion to elaborate.
“Don’t be worried, don’t be worried,” Sheen told Rossen. “I am grandiose because I live a grandiose life; what’s wrong with that?”
Sheen said that the women — Natalie Kenly, a model Sheen calls “Natty,” and Rachel Oberlin, a self-described porn actress he calls “Rach” — are helping to raise his twin sons by real estate investor Brooke Mueller, Bob and Max, about to turn 2. “If I can’t be there, they’re there,” he said. “Everybody helps out ... There’s nothing broken here.”
The actor said his live-in-girlfriends challenge him from time to time, but insisted that he has ultimate control of domestic decisions. “Everybody’s vote has equal importance. But when we’re approaching crisis, I remind them, ‘Look, I’m 22 years further down the road ... my plan is gonna be the best one in the room. So, just trust me on that and everybody will win. Everybody will win and everybody’s needs will be taken care of.”
But Sheen has rejected help from his father, actor Martin Sheen, and from his brothers, he says. In an interview with Sky News, Martin Sheen said, “The disease of addiction is a form of cancer, and you have to have equal measures of concern and love and lift [him] up. And so that's what we do for him.”
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But Charlie Sheen says he doesn’t need his family’s help. “They tried,” Sheen told Rossen. “But I said, ‘You know, I’m not ready, I’m not interested in your rhetoric right now. I appreciate your love, your compassion, if that's what you wanna call it. But I’m 45 years old, and I’m not interested in people treating me like a 12-year-old.”Video: Sheen: ‘Tired of pretending I’m not special’ (on this page)
Referring to his father in terms of one of Martin Sheen’s most famous films, “Apocalypse Now,” Charlie said: “He’s gnarly, it’s Captain Willard, I mean, come on. You know, greatest film ever made. But it’s a different dialogue. You know, he’s on a different channel, and that's all right, he’s entitled.”
Sheen insists that he doesn’t need the help. He has, he said, “sort of evolved beyond it.”
Sheen also brushed off the fact that his longtime publicist, Stan Rosenfield, suddenly walked out Monday following yet another combative interview the actor gave, this time to TMZ.Publicist quits after Sheen's TMZ interview
“I can’t speak for him, but maybe he got overwhelmed,” Sheen said. “Maybe he felt like he wasn't respected ... I don't know ... but there’s sort of something epic about that. That it got so gnarly that Stan just went, ‘I’m out.’ That’s fine. That’s how I roll. And if it’s too gnarly for people, then buh-bye. There’s the freakin’ door, you know?”
‘Shaking the tree’
Sheen also took aim at responses to Monday’s TODAY interview, in which he described himself as a “warlock” with “tiger blood” and “Adonis DNA” — comments that made some wonder whether he was delusional, megalomaniacal or worse.
“I’m entertained as hell,” Sheen told Rossen. “I’m not saying that it’s not true, but I’m saying I’m laughing. And I’m laughing with the goddesses; I’m laughing with my friends.
“Did they expect it to be like a normal interview?” he added. “Did they expect it to be just conventional and boring and whatever else? No, man, it’s — we're shaking the tree.”
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But he also said he wanted to reassure his fans: “Don’t be worried. Celebrate this movement. And I love [you] and I’m so grateful that you’ve supported me and the show for so long and I will not let you down, trust me.”Video: This video is no longer available (on this page)
However, Sheen’s role on “Two and a Half Men” and the future of the show itself remain unclear. Production has been suspended for the remainder of the season, and Sheen told Rossen Monday that he would return only if he got a $1 million raise, boosting his salary from $2 million to $3 million per episode.
CBS Chief Executive Leslie Moonves is shrugging off the effect of cancelling Charlie Sheen's popular sitcom "Two and a Half Men." In fact, he says the move is saving money. Moonves told an investors conference in San Francisco on Tuesday that stopping production on the final eight episodes of this season is "financially a gainer."
He says reruns take in less advertising revenue, but not making new episodes saves CBS Corp. a lot of money, at least in the short term. Monday night's repeat was still popular — it was the top-watched show of the night.
As for Sheen's public pronouncements, Moonves said, "I wish he would have worked this hard to promote himself for an Emmy." He added, "I hope it's back. We'll see."
Producer Chuck Lorre hasn't officially responded to Sheen’s statements. But at the close of Monday night’s episode of another Chuck Lorre sitcom, “Mike and Molly,” the producer released a cryptic statement through a “vanity card” that appeared briefly in the show’s credits as well as on the show’s website.
“The following are my uncensored thoughts,” Lorre wrote. “I hope this will put an end to any further speculation ... The paradox of our culture ... celebrates the ego while simultaneously promoting its evisceration with drugs and alcohol ... The Fall from Grace is, in fact, a Sprint from Grace. Or perhaps more accurately, ‘Screw Grace, I am so outta here!’ Questions?”
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