For the first time since his return to television in ‘Anger Management,’ Charlie Sheen addressed journalists gathered at the Television Critics Association press tour in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Saturday.
Joined by a number of costars, including Selma Blair, and series creator Bruce Helford, Sheen appeared relatively relaxed — or at least weekend-casual, wearing plaid shorts and no socks — to address the critics who had scrutinized his meltdown post-“Two and a Half Men” firing.
“It was a crazy time, and it was sort of like a dream I couldn’t wake up from or some runaway train I couldn’t get off of, but I was the conductor,” Sheen said when asked to comment on the year he lived on tiger blood and launched the “My Violent Torpedo of Truth/Defeat is Not An Option” tour.
Sheen described his breakdown as “something that could never happen again, so that was pretty cool.” Sticking to the talking points of his redemption story, he added, “I learned a lot. I learned stick to what you know. Don’t go on the road with a one-man show in 33 days in 21 cities with no act. My life’s different now that I’m not insane anymore.”
FX, at least, is banking on the actor to be more accountable. “Anger Management” is poised to receive a 90-episode pickup if its initial run of 10 episodes perform well — and so far, the network is pleased with the ratings. (The show launched on June 28 to the highest series premiere ratings in cable history for a scripted comedy.)
Sheen called that prospect “exciting as hell” and added that he doesn’t “think 90 is gonna be enough” episodes to tell the story of Charlie Goodson, his former ballplayer with anger issues-turned-therapist.
The pickup would also herald the addition of Martin Sheen, Charlie’s father, to the cast as a series regular. Before a renewal decision is made, the elder Sheen will be guest starring as Martin Goodson, Charlie Goodson’s dad, on the episode that airs Aug. 16.
John Landgraf, President and General Manager of FX Networks, said adding Martin Sheen “will give an extra dimension to the show and it will also make it a multi-generational family show.”
As for working with his real-life dad, Sheen reminded critics that the veteran had guest starred on his son’s previous sitcoms, “Spin City” and “Two and a Half Men.”
“I don’t want to say we peaked, but [Martin] brings a whole different energy to it,” Sheen said. “It’s not Martinville, but it’s certainly not Charlieville at that point, you know. I think it’s the best episode we did.”
It’s likely they’ll have 90 more chances to top it.