CBS President: What I learned from Charlie Sheen

As expected, CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler was hammered with plenty of questions today regarding the big changes on Two and A Half Men and what, if anything, she learned from the firestorm that resulted in the high-profile departure of Charlie Sheen.

“Oh where do I begin?” she told reporters at a CBS press conference at the Beverly Hilton. “What we learned is that we have an extraordinary cast. I was just at the table read, We have extraordinary writers, extraordinary actors and there is great value in hiring an actor like Ashton Kutcher. He is extra professional, a funny, talented gifted actor who comes with a tremendout amount of commitment and enthusiasm. What I’ve learn is the show is brilliantly written, extraordinarily produced and that you have an opportunity moving forward to create an exciting new character and deliver a great show.”

She did provide a little detail about Kutcher’s character: His name is Walden Schmidt and he’s an “internet billionaire with a broken heart.  It will be two-parter over two weeks.” Regrettably, she wouldn’t confirm the rumors that Charlie Sheen’s character will be dead in the season opener. She only offered this: “It will be a big event.” But she did seem to indicate that he’s going to keep his scruffy beard: “He looks great. He’s making great choices with Chuck about the look of his character.”

Kutcher won’t be participating in CBS’ press day — much to the chagrin of TV reporters. “There is a tremendous amount of energy and focus and attention [on the show],” Tassler said. “When everybody walked on that set Monday, you could cut the air with a knife. It’s very focused and requires a lot of attention.”

She even had a few last words about Sheen. Tassler said she hasn’t been pitched his new sitcom, Anger Management, but seems to think he’s got a full dance card. “He’s moved on. He’s got a lot of choices.”

Tassler also addressed the departure of Laurence Fishburne and admitted that he had “very big shoes to fill” when he first joined CSI and how the pressure will be on Ted Danson when he assumes the role of D.B. Russell this season. “The departure of Billy Peterson was impactful, and ironically, you look at how fragmented the team was when Langston came in. He sort of churned things up a bit. So when D.B Russell comes in, he really has to really reconnect the team and bring them back together, assert his authority.”

Finally, Tassler admitted that CBS is continuing to look for the next big performance/competition reality show. (Yay?) — With additional reporting from James Hibberd

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Comments (162 total) Add your comment
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  • joe luck

    Two and a half ‘meh’

    • Tom

      Three really big faarts

      • richromancvb

        I am a beautiful doctor and now I­­­­ am seeking a good man who can give me real love.You know any millionaire club ? i think……….W’eαlthy’Flirt. Č0M…. … the best club for us to seek rich …..It’s the Only Forbes Magazine Rated International site for rich and wealthy people who are seeking long last and enduring relationships!..just hope i can meet my man!
        —-Serioulsy, because of you i will never watch that show. And I’ll probalay tell people it sucks too so they won’t watch. consider yourself cancelled———

      • check

        I’m a spamming c u n t… go check out my virus ridden website for gold diggers.

      • remove me

        yay! lets troll the boards and see how many people can figure out that we just put a link in here even thought we edited it to avoid censure…..roflmfao!

    • Mindi

      Won’t be watching anymore. I loved the show and Charlie Sheen. Don’ t like Kutcher at all!!!!!!!! Hope Charlie Sheen gets a new show.

      • Quirkydude

        Like the one that is referenced in the article?

  • Switched at Birth

    EW please write about “Switched at Birth” – it is the best show on tv right now!!!!!!

    • Matt


    • AB

      quit being such a spammer, you aren’t helping your show at all, you’re just being annoying

    • JAM

      Serioulsy, because of you i will never watch that show. And I’ll probalay tell people it sucks too so they won’t watch. consider yourself cancelled

      • actually

        actually when someone is that passionate about a show, it is usually worth a look, that is how I got into Firefly and I am glad I did

    • Gabriel

      I like Switched At Birth :P It’s not the best show on TV though by any means. It’s great melodrama cheese wrapped in cheesey bread. I would never recommend it to anyone though or hound anyone to watch it ;x

    • Naman


    • Tom

      Lorre’s kids wish they were switched at birth.

    • Kathy

      I sure hope they renew this show…I LOVE IT!!!!

    • Marcie

      I love this show too. I’d enjoy a recap of it.

  • hypatia

    Manure! All CBS has done this season is attempt to gut any strong female characters in their dramas and let a fool of a producer goad his golden goose out the door. Two and Half Sloppy Seconds? Who needs it!

    • Shellibelli

      totally agree, with them letting the ass producer let his ego get int he way of the show and Sheen.

      He wrote the role for Sheen in mind, its not like they didnt know his style or personality. they should have let egos go and work it thru.

      • Captain

        After all this time, you don’t think Charlie Sheen was the one to blame? You don’t see how he’d be impossible to work with? The guy was being paid one million dollars per-episode and he still couldn’t show up every day cause he was partying so hard. If anyone else in the world said that about their boss, they’d be fired, why should Charlie be an exception? I’m not a Chuck Lorre fan but Charlie got what he deserved.

      • charles

        The simple fact is that Chuck Lorre is more valuable for the CBS. He has 3 (successful) shows on CBS, Sheen was part of one (that was the most successful). Still losing Lorre or great relationship with him would have hurt more than losing Sheen. If “2 and 1/2 Men” bombs next season, they will at least think about rehiring Sheen, but without Lorre’s blessing, it will never happen.

      • jdr

        captain He did show up but wasn’t his full self.

      • penny

        Yeah Captain we are many to be objective and to know that Sheen was NOT the “bad guy” in all this feud.
        He had faults but so is passive agressive Chuck Lorre but of course Charlie is the only one vilified..pathetic.
        That being said moving on RIP Two and a Half Men.

    • jones

      If there is a strong female character, they should try deodorant as that might help. If you mean are there any great actors to play the parts, nah.

      • slag heap

        the problem with creating “strong female characters” is they go too far and fall into tough b*tch mode.female characters can’t be “weak” in any regard because tv wants to appeal to women viewers so they make the women better than men and it becomes bullsh*t .

  • Jay

    The final sentence af this article is enough to make me cry:
    “Finally, Tassler admitted that CBS is continuing to look for the next big performance/competition reality show”

    Isn’t the market for that crap sufficiantly saturated YET?

    • Captain

      Not by CBS apparently.

      • Tom

        There is no originality left in Hollywood to muster another non-reality show. It’s all crap now. Get used to it.

  • Nathan

    No Charlie, no watchy.

    • joanie

      Who cares if you watch or not? Plenty of people will be watching.

      • Marie Currie

        For the first two epi certainly (and it will be mostly about Charlie Harper) after that we will see…

      • Tom

        I’m not going to watch this dog of a show. No Sheen, no way!

      • patel imin

        I sure won’t

      • ScubaGolfJim

        I’ll actually START watching the show now. Never watched before because I loathe Sheen.

    • DT

      It’s exactly the reason I WILL be watching now. Hopefully the new character won’t be a womanizing jerk-wad. Maybe a slacker/slob? That’d be good.

      • Fiona

        slacker/slob ? how boring and too much common, Judd Appatow already did sature us with it (and for the most part he is a better writer than Lorre).
        A little of originality (and Harper persona was because Sheen love him hate him is quite unique) or let this show die.

    • Mike

      Winner winner chicken dinner? I don’t think so, winner winner SHEEN dinner.

  • Brett

    No Charlie, no watchie for me either. Ashton Kushy is a definate no-no.

    • Captain

      Are you 5?

    • Joe

      On the contrary. Everyone want’s to watch a car wreck!

  • DanOregon

    Oh please. This is Three and a Half Men we’re talking about. This could be the greatest episode of Punk’d ever.

    • Tom

      Bruce Willis might have saved this show. But Ashton? No way.

  • wren

    Ted Danson? I stopped watching when Grissom left and now I have even less reason to ever come back.

    • JAM

      Unless Danson was playing Sam Malone, a former Boston bar owner turned CSI investigator, Woody Harrelson guest stars! hahahahaha, sigh

      • Carol

        Woody could guest star as a marijuana grower.

  • Mr.Beepo

    ASSton is the anchor that sinks this show. Too bad for the rest of the talented cast.

  • WillFerrellStinks

    Giving Kutcher a contract for a meager year doesn’t exactly scream that CBS has any confidence in him or the show either for that matter .

  • AuntieMM

    What I’ve learn is the show is brilliantly written, extraordinarily produced and that you have an opportunity moving forward to create an exciting new character and deliver a great show.”……………OH COME ON CBS!!! Cut the bs and admit that CBS has way too much to lose with this show if it tanks without Sheen.

    • John

      You have to admire the way she was able to make that statement with a completely straight face.

  • Gwen

    Please, no more competitive reality shows.

  • Brian

    I’d expect spelling/grammar mistakes in the comments, but not in the actual article!

    • sarah d

      How often are you on this site. The editing here is “loose” at best. Love the sight though so I try not to complain unless they get something factually wrong.

      • Come on!!

        Sight? Really???

    • Freddette

      “tremendout” — need a proof reader? I’m available.

      • Freddette

        proofreader — ugh on that one.

  • Alternative

    The writers in Hollywood must be getting lazy. It is easy to kill Charlie by driving off cliff – what would have been more fun is have him join a cult called something like “Family of Duh” and selling all his assets to Ashton – which would make more sense about Jake and Alan staying in house. Or being so drunk he goes on vacation and buys the wrong ticket, ends up on the plane with his head doctor on way Portugal to the “gay” beaches. On the long trip he discovers that the reason he has been sleeping with so many women is because he is actually gay, meets someone there and stays. So many possibilities.

    • Naman

      They’re just mocking the real life incident in which Charlie Sheen’s car was allegedly stolen and driven off a cliff–twice, no less.

      • Tom

        It was only a Chrysler 300 sedan. No big loss actually.

    • cra

      Actually I love that idea! That would be a great way to get rid of Charlie. Sells his stuff, discovers he is gay and goes off to live a happy liife. Or, on the other hand, he could become a monk.

    • Dave

      Excellent idea!

  • Clete

    The next big performance/competition reality show. How about farting with the nexwork stars.

    • @

      Holy sh!tballs Clete – I just spit water all over the keyboard – lmaooo

    • Naman


    • Dave

      Thanks Clete! I needed a good laugh this afternoon!

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