Charlie Sheen offers to pay 'Men' crew

TWO-AND-A-HALF-MENImage Credit: Greg Gayne/CBSThis could be good news for all of those out-of-work crew members who are on forced hiatus because of Charlie Sheen’s need to undergo rehab: TMZ is reporting that the 45-year-old actor would be willing to cover one-third of the salaries if CBS and Warner Bros. TV would pay the rest.

EW has learned, however, that no decision has been made at either media company about whether or not to help compensate the crew, which doesn’t get paid whenever Men goes dark. If TV’s No. 1 comedy resumes production at the end of the month, there still may be time to complete most, if not all, of the eight episodes left in the order, so the crew won’t lose any money from the unplanned break, which began last Tuesday. Still, everything depends on whether Warner Bros. TV, which produces Men for CBS, and creator/executive producer Chuck Lorre believe Sheen is ready to return. Only they can decide when production resumes.

In the meantime, a source also told TMZ (which like EW, is owned by Time Warner) that Sheen wants to return to work by next week.

Once Sheen agreed to undergo rehab, the focus immediately turned to Men’s 300 crew members. Stars like Jon Cryer and Angus T. Jones — both of whom signed rich new pacts recently with Warner Bros. TV — will likely get paid whether or not they’re working, but it’s different for the show’s crew members, who are considered freelance workers. The studio is under no obligation to pay the Men crew, but some insiders suggested that it would be a welcome gesture of good faith if Sheen did. And it wouldn’t be the first time the star of a show paid the salaries for his out-of-work minions — all of the late night hosts covered the paychecks for their crews during the early days of the 2007-08 Writers Strike.


Comments (140 total) Add your comment
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  • LOL

    It’s the least he/they could do.

    • Lauren

      you’re right. It is the LEAST he could do.

      • Heidi

        YEAH – why only a third?

      • Dee

        Talk about a guilty conscious ! I am glad he is owning up though.

      • Bette

        The Bank of Charlie is now open.

      • D’s Advocate

        He could have paid nothing, Lauren.

      • Lauren

        D’s- I refer you to my full comment below, but basically. The reason behind his paying anything would be recognition of his total fault in the work stoppage. Ergo, offering only a third IF the production co (who are not at fault) indicates that he doesn’t see his role in this. The public outcry for him to pay wasn’t because he’s rich. It’s because it’s his fault- 100%.

      • RaWeezy

        i think offering to pay 1/3 of people’s salaries you don’t employ sounds pretty generous. sure its his fault but he’s not the EMPLOYER he’s the EMPLOYEE,tell me another job that has this same practice???

      • Maggie

        @RaWeezy, Charlie’s getting paid for the missed episodes, but the crew isn’t. He’s the one responsible for the episodes not being filmed, but he’s still getting $2 million for each episode missed. Charlie Sheen is responsible for the work shutdown, not the employer. Since he’s being paid for doing no work, that’s money Charlie hasn’t actually earned. Giving a portion of it to people who are suffering financially directly because of Charlie’s actions isn’t “pretty generous.” Actually, it’s the very least Charlie can do to make up for screwing with the lives of all these people.

      • RaWeezy

        @Maggie so if you were responsible for your 9-5 work place getting shut down for a couple weeks, you would pay everyone’s salary until work resumed?? sure everyone might blame you but regardless of whether it was your fault or not the EMPLOYER would be on the hook not you the EMPLOYEE. everyone is focusing on how much $$$ he earns, but if he’s getting $2mill per ep, just imagine the size of the money vault Warner Brothers & CBS have because of him. if you do a job for 8 years, earn your employers $$$ and when you need time off to sort out your s%^t but still offer to pay 1/3 of the crew salaries hoping WB & CBS pay for the other 2/3 i think is pretty generous. Two & A Half Men is too much of a cash cow for WB & CBS too let go so id expect them to pay the other 2/3.

      • Justaguy

        Ra. Et al. Charlie is a employer he is a Producer off the show. Producer = owner = gets a cut of DVD and syndication.

        Even in the role of owner he is not obligated to pay freelance workers.

      • Lauren

        let’s not pretend this situation can be applied to real life. If a real person’s drug addiction interfered with his job or his coworkers job, he would be fired.

      • RaWeezy

        @Justaguy when he renewed his contract he got a big pay bump and a “Producer” credit in name only. most stars get “Producer” credit(if there show is a hit) when contracts are renewed to keep them happy(ie Hugh Lauire House,Jeffery Donavan Burn Notice,Tom Welling Smallvile just to name a couple).admittedly though from time to time some actually do produce episodes.but just cause your a “Producer” in the credits,it doesnt=owner everytime

    • Genie

      The least he could do is pay the whole thing. He has no shame.

      • Denzil Duane Roper

        No;No;No…No! The LEAST HE COULD “Du” is ,”Invite the whole crew too join in on the “Chase the Dragon” episodes during break-time & lunch!? “Is Everybody Happy?” Don’t Worry Be Happy?No;No;The Arm&Hammer is for the anxsious stomach : the IceCubes are for Charlied Charly too chew on!

    • DR

      It’s the first responsible thing he’s done this year.

    • blobbity blah blah

      cheap bastard should pay their entire salaries. he can afford it.

  • Brian

    How generous….not. With what Charlie is paid he can afford to pay the salaries of the crew while he get his “stuff” together.

    • Kirsten

      Yes. CBS and WB are already losing money because of him. This stoppage isn’t because of them, it’s because of him. He should pay for it all.

      • Tarc

        And in what reality is that statement even remotely sane? I cant stand Sheen, but it’s simply insane to think that an employee of a corporation should have to pay other employees for medical leave (regardless of the reason). It doesn’t work that way anywhere else in the real world, and it shouldn’t in Hollwood.

      • self

        Did you all forget he actually has been very generation by the success of his show. He does not owe the crew squat. He is just being very very nice! get a grip people

      • Ian

        he’s been very ‘generation’? What does that mean?

      • rerun

        Ian, don’t be mean. You know Self meant federation.

    • Chaz Winterbottom

      Not? Party on Wayne, party on Garth!

    • Mike

      To be fair, Sheen’s character made them all of the money from Two and a Half Men. To say he’s losing them money…well, just doesn’t compare to how much he’s made for them. Not to mention the only way he’ll lose them money is if the show has to cut some of the 8 remaining episodes. It would be nice of Sheen to pay for much of his crew, though.

      • MomC

        Actually, CBS has been pretty clear that Men holds up exceptionally well in repeats. That means they are still doing well with advertising dollars even during the stoppages. Then, they are not paying the crew during the stoppage. How much money are they actually losing by this stoppage?

      • Leticia

        nice given that the crew wound up put out of work by the antics of Charlie that in the end they will have a tltlie income from the now proably never coming back show. as they find other work going on now that pilot season is around.too bad charlie does not hand over his paycheck to the crew.

  • Francis

    I thought the title for this article should have been:
    “Charlie Sheen offer to pay ‘Men’ crew…with cocaine and porn stars”
    Not gonna lie to you, I would love to get paid like that.

  • Jen E.

    That’s very decent of him. Let’s hope CBS and WB will be able to live up to the high morals of Charlie Sheen. (Yes, I just said that.)

  • Chris

    The man is a role model for all and my own hero.

    • mike m

      He for sure is NO role model for anyone.

      • liveitup

        I think Chris was being sarcastic…

      • greenthumb

        apart from wot has happened recently how cn u say he not a role model for any1? r u a moron? the man has made countless films n was highest payed sitcom actor in usa.

  • Diane

    The crew aren’t “freelance” workers. They are union members and generally file unemployment when the show goes dark.

    • EmerZon

      And now Charlie can’t penrted he’s such a great guy for offering to pay the crew all this money both because they’re already being paid and because oh look at that, it basically one episodes’ worth of salary. So much skin off his back to pay the crew that! I don’t care why Warner Bros did it, at least someone did.

  • Mike

    Haha. They still haven’t corrected it too!

  • Lauren

    Here’s the problem with Sheen’s solution. The whole point of his being the one to pay is him recognizing that the work stops are his fault. For him to say- I’ll pay a third IF the production co ponies up the rest…he clearly doesn’t see his role in this.

    • DogBoy lets see… a egomaniacal drug addict and pornstar junkie is only looking out for his own public relations with this gesture?? No– couldn’t be!

    • sarah

      i agree, sounds like he decided to cheap his way out and pony up only 1/3. he’s the highest paid actor on tv right now! why doesn’t he have a chat with leno, lettermen and conan about the writer’s strike, because they weren’t tv’s highest paid when they fully supported all of their crew.

      • anonymous

        Charlie is holding out for OPRAH.

  • DogBoy

    …so lets see… a egomaniacal drug addict and pornstar junkie is only looking out for his own public relations with this gesture?? No– couldn’t be!

  • Marc

    Last time I checked, CBS and Warner Bros. TV were not responsible for two-thirds of the blame for these crew members being out of work. It’s all on Charlie Sheen, and considering both the insane $$ he makes from that show and the many previous production interruptions he’s caused, why the hell isn’t he footing the entire bill? Addict or not…what a douche.

    • Mark

      Last time I checked Charlie Sheen is just an employee and not responsible at the end. Clear cut – CS doesn’t has to pay.

  • Mertz

    Charlie still got $1.5 mil in residuals for the first the the show is in re-runs. The crew gets unemployment check!. Boy that sure seems fair–NOT. Out of his $1.5mil PER SHOW he got for doing nothing but sitting on his drugged out ass, he can certainly afford to pay the crew 100% himself. I agree with other posts–he caused the problems–all on his lonesome. The network and WB had nothing to do with it. It is a total cop out to offer to pay a third. C-L-U-E-LESS.

    • Tarc

      Not nearly so clueless as anyone that expects any corporate employee to pay the salaries of other corporate employess when they need to take medical leave. If anyone should pay, it should be the EMPLOYER of the CREW, not Sheen. Like everywhere else in America… moron.

      • Sarah D

        I agree. The people that made the decision to NOT film epsiodes sans Sheen for the few episodes he was away should shoulder some of the blame for the crew’s lost wages… a couple Berta or Jake centric episodes would have been great. He may be the star, but he’s not the only actor on the show worth watching.

  • Carrie

    Let’s run some figures (all are speculative): 300 crew members out of work. If the average salary is $50,000, let’s say, then the average weekly salary is $961. The show has been down for 2 weeks, so each crew member has lost out on $1,923 ($961 x 2). Multiply that by 300 crew members and the total loss in salary is $576,900.

    So Charlie is offering to pay $192,300 ($576,900/3).

    Considering that he makes over $1 million per episode, seems like he could offer to cover the entire salaries for the entire crew for the entire two weeks and still have it cost less than he earns per episode.

    • Sky

      I have read that me earns 2 million an episode.

      • Sky

        Oops, wish it were “me” rather than he (Sheen).

      • Carrie

        So he could pay the salaries of the crew for an entire month and get 30 days of rehab!

        The fact that he makes so much money for such a crappy show is just…demoralizing. I’d rather it was you (and me!) instead of Sheen as well!

      • Maggie

        Yup, $2 million per episode is what Charlie gets.

        Reports also say his contract will pay him for the episodes that won’t get filmed, but crew members won’t get paid. Since they aren’t working because of him, and Charlie is getting paid without having to work for the money, the very least he can do is pay the salaries for all of the crew by himself.

    • Mac

      the average salary is around 130,000 do you have any idea how much gaffers and grips make? A LOT. then the DPs make way more local 600 cameramen too, plus local 706 workers make bank, 50K is a ridiculously low number

  • Yngwie Mackadangdang, Jr.

    What a jerk. “if CBS and Warner Bros. TV would pay the rest” Really?! He’s the coke fiend loser that caused this mess, why should they be paying to clean up ANY of it? If WB or CBS agrees to this, it will look like they’re condoning his bad behavior, so I don’t see it happening. Besides, they already paid him a gajillion dollars for his “work” -if he can’t keep his s#!t together long enough to get the job done, he isn’t worth the paper his big fat check is printed on. They should fire him and re-name the show “Hey, Remember That Jacka$$ Charlie Sheen?”

  • Sky

    Sheen has likely spent millions on drugs & hired ladies to “entertain” him in whatever fashion in fancy hotels and other expensive retreats. I agree, that if he truly believes he needs rehabilitation, he would accept responsibility and want to cover the costs for the workers. It was their dedication to doing their jobs that helped him earn his multimillions over the years. I doubt that he is their yet, if some of the comments he is said to have made are true. In addition, with addictions of the magnitude that he has with cocaine, alcohol and sex and maybe others, a couple week stay at rehab is not going to change anything. It’s obvious he is doing it only for appearances and damage control – not because he is serious about it.

  • Walrus

    “The crew aren’t “freelance” workers. They are union members and generally file unemployment when the show goes dark.”

    Diana – that is untrue. Many of the crew on any working production are not union and therefore do not get the benefits or unemployment that union members are entitled to.
    Remember, every TV show and film that you enjoy is made on the backs of the “little people” that work little pay, benefit or credit. That’s the way it is today, and the way it’s been since Cecil B. DeMille.

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