Chuck Lorre Called Charlie Sheen When He Needed a ‘Degenerate’
‘Two and a Half Men’ creator talks about the show’s genesis in the new issue of The Hollywood Reporter
In 2003, Chuck Lorre was coming up with a new show that required some very specific casting – a comedy he says was about how “a child might be a positive influence on the life of a degenerate.”
It didn’t take long to cast the part.
“For some reason, the words ‘Charlie Sheen’ came to mind,” Lorre tells the new issue of The Hollywood Reporter.
Sheen and Lorre met and a ratings star in Two and a Half Men was born for CBS.
“He had a great sense of humor about it and we built a show around him,” says Lorre of Sheen, now the most highly paid television actor in Hollywood making an estimated $2 million per episode because of the show's success.
It is a relationship – and a hit sitcom – that continues today, despite Sheen’s much-publicized personal problems off the set.
“He’s a worker amongst workers,” Lorre says of Sheen today, “His personal issues don’t come onto the stage, and he’s been a good partner for a long time.”
Lorre’s work as the showrunner for three unreleated shows (Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory and Mike & Molly) might not have earned him Emmy awards or critical plaudits. But THR looks at the man responsible for bringing 40 million viewers to CBS each week -- and how he does it.
"He's found a way to capture what is uniquely real and honest about human relationships," says CBS Entertainment president Nina Tassler.
For this entire story, pick up this week's issue on newsstands today. Subscribers can read the entire text here.