Two and a Half Men was once one of America’s favorite sitcoms. In fact, the show ran from 2003 to 2015 for twelve seasons. Starring some big names such as Charlie Sheen and Jon Cryer, the show was an absolute hit amongst viewers. The show centered around two brothers, Charlie (Charlie Sheen) and Alan Harper (Jon Cryer) as Alan had recently gone through a divorce and moved in with Charlie, as he had nowhere to go. Alan also has a son, Jake (played by Angus T. Jones), who occasionally joins his father and uncle, as they get into some crazy situations and other antics.
Although the show was absolutely hysterical, with its one-liners and well thought out jokes, the show reigned supreme for a long time. Things started to go downhill when the star of the show, Charlie Sheen, was heavily involved in alcohol and drug abuse. Producers tried to sweep things under the rug and give Charlie the benefit of the doubt to get his act together, however, they failed miserably. Behind the scenes, things weren’t as fun and happy-go-lucky as the show appeared. There was a lot of drama — mostly because of Charlie, however, production and other members of the cast also have their secrets. These are 16 secrets producers of Two and a Half Men don’t want us to know.
16. Charlie Was The Highest Paid Actor
While Charlie Sheen was at his peak, he was the highest paid actor on TV. He raked in approximately $1.8 million per episode, by far the highest paid of all time. Before Charlie got heavily involved in substances, he was at the prime of his acting career. He was well sought after, so the producers of the show were willing to pay him whatever he wanted to guarantee he would stay on the show. Considering everything that happened with Charlie in his personal and professional life, the fact that producers were willing to pay him $1.8 million per episode… isn’t something they should be boasting about. It was a heavy price to pay (literally), regardless, the huge paycheck was able to keep him on board for years.
15. Charlie Wanted A Spin-Off
There’s no lying that the show was a huge hit — numbers show millions of viewers tuning in every week to watch Charlie and Alan get into serious trouble. Even after things went sour between Charlie and the producers of the show, Charlie still wanted to be involved somehow. Producer Chuck Lorre revealed in a note at the end of the series finale that Charlie had made it known that he wanted a spin-off. He was hoping that producers would be interested in creating a show surrounding just around Charlie and Alan’s lives, and call it The Harpers. Producers were still angry over the comments that Charlie had made about them, and the public meltdown he had. There were still a lot of hard feelings, and as a result, producers turned down Charlie’s proposal. They definitely didn’t want to get involved with him again.
14. Hugh Grant Was Supposed To Replace Charlie
Once Charlie was finally fired, producers scrambled to figure out what was going to happen to the future of the show. Would they continue on? Would they recast Charlie? Would they go in a whole different direction completely? Even the writers and producers weren’t sure themselves. They immediately reached out to famed actor Hugh Grant, to see if he would like to join the show somehow. Hugh Grant revealed to Howard Stern on his radio show that he turned it down because he didn’t know anything about the role they offered him. He said, “They talked to me about it, but the problem was they didn’t have a script or a new character. They just said, ‘Trust us. We’ll create one.’ I said, ‘Well it’s very difficult for me to consider this without a script.’ And they said, ‘Trust us! Trust us!’” Without any knowledge of the role he would take on, he declined the offer.
13. Angus T. Jones Has Dark Family Secrets
We all know Angus T. Jones as the hysterical and not so bright kid on Two and a Half Men. He plays the “half” man, Jake, who is the son of Alan and nephew of Charlie. Not many people know that he has some dark family secrets that he tried to keep hush-hush. His real life uncle, Eric Eugene Claypool, shot a man that he claimed abused him as a teenager. As a result, he is currently serving a 99 year prison sentence for the crime. Crime clearly runs in the family, as both of his parents were in trouble with the law as well. His mom, Carey Jones had some legal troubles in 1992 when she ripped out the meter of a taxi and punched a cop while heavily intoxicated. She was also arrested on a burglary charge when a woman found her in her living room wearing her boyfriend’s clothing. Angus’ dad also got into some trouble when he was arrested in 1986 for possession and carrying an unlicensed firearm. Also, in 1997, Carey had her husband arrested when she accused him of pulling her out of a car and pushing her. Sounds like a lot of family trouble to us!
12. There Were Real Love Triangles
While filming the show, Jon Cryer divorced his wife Sarah Trigger in 2004. Feeling down from his divorce, he eventually got back into the dating scene again. He had met a woman not long after, and was interested in her, so the two began to date. Cryer decided to have his new girlfriend meet his co-star, Charlie Sheen. Well, when the two met, things got a tiny bit awkward. She said that she knew Charlie already, but he denied it, saying he had never met her before. Much to Cryer’s surprise, it turned out that his new girlfriend and his co-star did know each other — very well. It turned out that Charlie had slept with the woman before, and once Cryer found out, he immediately broke it off with her.
11. Charlie Couldn’t Get It Together On Set
When things started to escalate in Charlie’s personal life, he was constantly drinking and doing drugs, and as a result it was taking a huge toll on his professional life. When it came to filming episodes on set, Charlie couldn’t get it together no matter how hard he tried. He was a long way away from the esteemed actor he once was at the beginning of the series. There were reports of him stumbling around, and needing to lean on things for support. He also couldn’t remember his lines for the life of him — he would stumble over his words and stutter through his lines. They would have to do multiple takes until he eventually got it right. Many people noticed Charlie struggling and urged him to get help, which he turned down multiple times.
10. There Was A Second Ending
Anyone who watched the series finale of Two and a Half Men, knows just how strange it was. The whole episode was one entire dig at Charlie, making constant jabs at him with one liners and subtle jokes. During the episode, we discovered that Charlie wasn’t really dead, but held captive by an ex. He finally escapes and makes it to his old house to see Alan and Jake. But, before he can do so, a piano is dropped on him, killing him for real. The camera then pans out to producer Chuck Lorre, where he looks at the camera and says, “winning,” a quote from Charlie Sheen’s infamous meltdown, before a piano is dropped on him, too. At the end of the episode in a note, Lorre explains that there was another idea in mind that included Sheen, but that didn’t happen. “For the record, he was offered a role. Our idea was to have him walk up to the front door in the last scene, ring the doorbell, then turn, look directly into the camera and go off on a maniacal rant about the dangers of drug abuse. He would then explain these dangers only applied to average people. That he was far above average. He was a ninja warrior from Mars. He was invincible. And then we would drop a piano on him. We thought it was funny. He didn’t.”
9. Angus T. Jones Admitted To Using…
Like many child stars, Angus T. Jones had a hard time with dealing with so much success and fame at such a young age. He was thrown into the spotlight at such a young age that he didn’t know a normal life. Also like many other child stars, when things got tough for him he turned to drugs. In a now infamous viral video, Jones admitted to trying drugs while in high school. While he was a junior, he was first introduced to Mary-Jane. As if that weren’t enough, the following year when he was a senior in high school, that’s when he tried acid for the first time, saying it was a drug that changed lives. That’s definitely not the young and innocent Jake Harper that we know, that’s for sure!
8. Charlie Asked Jon To Hide His “Stash”
You’ve probably noticed by now that Charlie Sheen and Jon Cryer are a lot like the two brothers they play on TV. In real life, it seems as if Charlie got into trouble, and Jon was always there to try to help him get out of it. One day on the set, Sheen ran to Cryer’s dressing room in a panic. His then-wife Denise Richards came to the set for a surprise visit. He held a bag that he claimed was his “stash,” and asked Cryer to hide it from his wife, and in no way could she find it and know it was his. Cryer, being the good friend that he is, hid Charlie’s stash. Once again Charlie’s bad boy image was protected!
7. A Lot Of People Supported Charlie
After everything Charlie did to producers — bad mouthing them, causing them to halt production, and ultimately causing them to scramble — naturally they had to have some sort of resentment towards him. However, after all he had done both on and off set, people still loved and supported him. It angered producers that even after all of the evil things he did, he had so many people behind him, when it should’ve been the other way around. Jon Cryer explained this in his book about his time on the show. He said, “An astounding number of people stood up for Charlie, as though people should be able to show up to work rarely, if at all, verbally abuse their co-workers publicly with anti-Semitic slurs, get arrested on a regular basis — as well as abuse drugs to the point where they can barely function — and not have their high-paying jobs threatened.”
6. Charlie Gave Jon WHO Pointers?
As we previously stated, Jon Cryer went through a bad divorce in 2004. Feeling a little down and out, he slipped into a funk where he didn’t feel like dating for a while, and felt a little bad about himself. Desperate to feel better — or even any type of emotion after going through quite the emotional rollercoaster — he turned to Charlie for advice. Cryer was craving some sort of intimacy, and Sheen knew exactly how to help him. He suggested a few websites that offered call girls and that Cryer should give that a try. Sheen was very familiar with the website, as he had used it in the past. That was definitely something that Charlie Harper would do, that’s for sure!
5. The Show Lost Viewers When Charlie Left
In its prime, Two and a Half Men took in millions of viewers. (Around 15 million per episode, if you want to get technical.) People loved Charlie, regardless of his personal issues, and many tuned in just for him. After his abrupt exit from the show people were curious to see what was going to happen on the show. As a result, the first episode’s (post-Sheen) views shot sky high. A record of almost 28 million people tuned in to see the fate of Charlie Harper along with the new storyline that Ashton Kutcher was set to bring on. After the first episode, it seemed as if viewers weren’t really impressed with the show without Sheen. In the 11th season the show had about 8 to 10 million viewers, significantly less than when Sheen was on the show. Whether producers wanted to admit to it or not, Sheen definitely brought them ratings.
4. Angus T. Jones Left Because Of Moral Values
Charlie Sheen wasn’t the only one to make a dramatic exit from the show. Angus T. Jones also had a bit of a meltdown before his exit, following in Charlie’s footsteps. He joined the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, and made remarks that he thought the series was filth and he no longer wanted to be on the show and wanted nothing to do with it. He believed that it went against his moral values, and he couldn’t go on. He said, “You cannot be a true God-fearing person and be on a television show like that.” After his meltdown, he was moved from a starring role to a supporting one, only making appearances occasionally. However, he was eventually taken off the show completely, only coming back for the series finale.
3. Charlie Stopped Production To Go To Rehab
Once Charlie got to the point of no return, everyone including producers agreed that it was time that something was done about the situation. He couldn’t keep it together, and it was getting harder and harder to get things done in his state. Eventually Charlie agreed to enter rehab, even though he really didn’t want to. The show was in the middle of filming, and producers agreed that if he was going to get help, they would put a hold on filming. Of course, it didn’t help. Charlie only continued to spiral downward. That’s when Charlie had his infamous meltdown, which eventually led to him being fired from the show completely because of his remarks and his awful behavior. Production was willing to work with Charlie to compromise — get him help to get healthy, and they can continue to produce one of America’s favorite shows.
2. Charlie And Ashton Kutcher Fought
Charlie certainly wasn’t happy about his replacement, or the fact that he even had a replacement. At first, he was pretty quiet about the whole ordeal, and even gave the show a compliment for how they handled Charlie Harper’s death and transitioned Ashton Kutcher in. However, after some time, and the amount of viewers plummeting, Charlie felt it was time to tell the world how he really felt. He went on a rant on Twitter, telling Kutcher to stop ruining “his” show. Kutcher retaliated, talking to Jimmy Kimmel about the ordeal, and told Charlie to “shut the f— up.” Of course Charlie had to have the last word, tweeting, “But news flash. Dood, you ever tell me to shut the f— up ever again and I’ll put you on a hospital food diet for a year. #YaFeelMe Jr?” Eventually, the feud did end, and Charlie apologized in person.
1. Production Really Wanted Charlie For The Finale
Despite the hard feelings between Charlie and the producers, they actually really wanted to have him back for the series finale. Having him on the show would bring everything to a close, and would definitely please fans to see Charlie one last time. After telling him about the proposed ending… he wasn’t very impressed. Chuck Lorre told the New York Times, “I just have to assume that he didn’t see the humor in it, which is alright. What are you going to do? We thought that was a terrific way to end the series. He certainly understood there was a huge pent-up demand to see Charlie in the finale, and there would be creative closure in that. I wanted to make that happen, but it wasn’t meant to be. We made what I know to be a sincere effort to include him in the finale, in a way that would give him a real featured moment, and a funny moment—a self-deprecating and outrageous moment. The final moment would have been his. He chose not to do it. That was an effort not to just give him what he wanted, but to give the fans of the show what they wanted.”
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