Face to Face with Charlie Sheen

When Charlie Sheen turned around with a big gold-toothy smile, my first instinct was to seek an apology for the two (!) live appearances I was assigned to cover last spring, in the midst of his career meltdown/media frenzy.

He seemed to agree that his shows didn’t have that much content.

“Twenty-one cities, 33 days, no act!” he declared in what was not so much an apology as an admission, one capped by his overused catchphrase: “Winning!”

It had been a strange endeavor for all involved, it seemed. His live show generally involved him coming out on stage, smoking and seeing what was up with the audience – as if they had paid $50 and up to entertain him.

“Certain arenas were great, others were just like morgues,” he said, agreeing that when comics jumped on board – with actual material! – such as Jeffrey Ross at Foxwoods, things took better shape. It had grown from the trainwreck of its debut, which was widely reported as a bomb.

“It was the one of the best ones,” Sheen said. “Because look what it forced us to do: Scrap all that bullshit and make a show that’s simple.”

Sheen was causing the biggest commotion at the Fox network party – more than the stars of “Glee,” the “New Girl” herself or Kiefer Sutherland, returning to TV in the Fox series “Touch.” Yet work hadn’t much begin on his project – a comedy series for FX based on the movie “Anger Management.”

“We start in March,” he said of the filming for the series, set to debut on FX as soon as June.In the hiatus, he spoke of a movie he just completed for Roman Coppolla.

“It’s called ‘A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III’” and his role, you will not be surprised to learn is Charles Swan III.

Sheen seemed intent on having moved on from his painful firing from “Two and a Half Men,” which is continuing its successful ways with Ashton Kutcher. Sheen seemed nothing less than diplomatic about the parting all night. He’ll have to come to terms with it: When it premieres, “Anger Management” will share the Thursday nights with reruns of his old part on “Two and a Half Men.”

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