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There are not a ton of people who can say they were front and center when Charlie Sheen had a major breakdown, returning to drugs and booze during the 2010-2011 TV season. One of the people who was in the middle of Sheen’s time of trouble was Two and A Half Men actor Jon Cryer, who recently spoke out about Sheen’s erratic behavior during his final days on set. Production on the sitcom was shut down early in 2011 and Sheen was eventually fired from the hit CBS series.
Cryer recently spoke out about Sheen during a lengthy editorial with THR. During a taping in January 2011, Warner Bros.’ Bruce Rosenblum and Peter Roth wanted to meet Sheen on the set to make sure he could still handle his job responsibilities. On the Friday they showed up, Two and a Half Men was taping in front of a large studio audience and apparently, Sheen was shit, forgetting all of his lines. Cryer relates that Sheen eventually asked for a minute and got it together enough to “completely nail” every line during Round 2. But it would be the last time Cryer would ever see Sheen go to bat like that. Here’s what happened next:
Instead of sticking around after the taping, however, Charlie chose to walk out, still in full makeup, get in his car and have his driver take him home. He left Bruce Rosenblum and Peter Roth just standing by his trailer. And with that, we all accepted that something was truly broken here, that Charlie couldn't be counted on to even go through the motions anymore. That was the last episode of Two and a Half Men Charlie would ever shoot.
Soon after Sheen’s firing, he became a pop culture sensation for erratic behavior on social media and in interviews, regaling us with tales of tiger blood and “winning” at life. Luckily, Sheen eventually got his life back on track, but by then, the CBS comedy had moved on, hiring Ashton Kutcher to lead the series in his place. In fact, Sheen’s character, Charlie Harper, was supposedly killed off the series in an off-camera accident during Kutcher’s introductory episode. The era of Charlie Harper on Two and a Half Men was over, until it wasn’t.
Two and Half Men ended up running on CBS for four seasons after Charlie Sheen’s departure, ending its run just a few weeks ago. Shortly before the finale, Sheen expressed interest in returning to the series, despite getting killed off. And while the Two and a Half Men finale did feature Charlie Harper—(spoiler: who had lived on thanks to getting kidnapped by Rose)—but via an animated sequence and a look-alike rather than an actual appearance from Sheen. Knowing what the cast and crew went through during his troubled times, it’s probably better that the final cameo never happened.