Charlie Sheen Roast to Get Huge Marketing Push From Comedy Central

Ian White

The network is using Ozzy Osbourne's hit song "Crazy Train" for what will likely be one of its largest roast campaigns to date.

Comedy Central is pulling out all the stops when it comes to Charlie Sheen's upcoming roast.

The network is planning a big marketing push centered around the theme of Ozzy Osbourne's hit song "Crazy Train," including radio tie-ins, double-decker buses in New York and Los Angeles decorated with the "Crazy Train" theme and new TV spots that feature Sheen in train-conductor mode. In addition, the free morning daily AM New York will feature train tracks on its cover and two inside pages the day the roast airs, while train track-themed wallscapes will adorn two streets in New York's SoHo.

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Walter Levitt, executive vp marketing at Comedy Central, told Ad Age that this will probably end up being the network's largest campaign for one of its signature roasts to date.

"When people hear 'Crazy Train,' we want their first association to be with Charlie Sheen," Levitt said.

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Meanwhile, Levitt admits that it's no coincidence the roast will air Sept. 19, the same night that Sheen's former sitcom -- Two and a Half Men -- premieres with Ashton Kutcher taking over as co-star opposite Jon Cryer and Angus T. Jones.

As for the rumors that Sheen's character is going to be killed by a train? Well, that was just luck, Levitt added.

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"It was one of those moments as a marketer where you just feel like the universe is unfolding as it should and aligning perfectly," Levitt said, adding that "the fact that an hour earlier Charlie will be killed by a train is almost too perfect for words."

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