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This week, Charlie Sheen sat down with Today to reveal his big battle with HIV. But while Sheen has spent the last several years dealing with HIV, he’s also recently been making moves to rejuvenate his career. Reports indicate that before his big Today interview, Sheen took meetings with several big studios to talk about starring in a brand new TV show.
It should be noted that so far those meetings have not led to Sheen signing on for a brand new gig. Instead, the actor met with Sony Pictures TV and CBS, the latter where he formally starred in the megahit comedy Two and a Half Men. Deadline says the purpose of the meetings was to talk about a potential new half-hour sitcom that could headline the actor.
Obviously, Sheen is not the most stable actor to headline a sitcom. He was fired from the set of Two and a Half Men after a self-proclaimed “roid rage,” although that did not halt his career. He soon found a new show on FX called Anger Management, which was essentially a new take on the same type of character he played on Two and a Half Men. But production had to be shut down several times due to Sheen’s health issues, although it’s unclear how many people on that set knew he was HIV positive. (Leaked Sony emails indicate at least some higher-ups at major studios were aware). The actor says he contracted the virus in 2011, which means he was dealing with HIV throughout the entire time Anger Management was on the air.
Sheen told Matt Lauer he has projects in the works, but besides a short guest stint on The Goldbergs last year, the actor has been out of the public eye since Anger Management went off of the air. He’s definitely taking meetings for a new series, but he’s also facing lawsuits related to allegedly not telling people he was sexually intimate about his HIV positive status. If he ends up having to pay out money to those individuals, he’ll need an acting gig more than ever.
It’s hard to tell how this will shake out. Given the right project, Charlie Sheen is a valuable acting property, but his open problems with substance abuse and the fact that his health will need to continue taking priority over his career could be a major problem regarding future gigs. His career could go either way at this point. On the bright side, at least he’s come clean about his diagnosis and won’t be shaken down for money from blackmailers attempting to get the word out. In some ways, that’s a clean slate.