Jon Cryer reveals 'Men' details: Alan is Ashton's love mentor, Charlie's death addressed all season -- EXCLUSIVE

jon-cryer

Image Credit: CBS

Things are pretty different on Two and a Half Men this fall — both on the hit series and behind the scenes — and EW has some fresh intel about the newly top-secret comedy: Jon Cryer’s character Alan Harper will now be the experienced ladies man on the show. Charlie Sheen’s character not only dies in the much-discussed premiere, but his absence will be dealt with throughout the entire season. New hire Ashton Kutcher (who plays Walden Schmidt, a brokenhearted billionaire) is helping keep stress levels low off-camera by providing the Men crew with access to his decked-out party trailer and massage therapist. And all the while, the comedy’s storylines are suddenly under guard like on a Christopher Nolan thriller, with studio-audience members signing nondisclosure agreements and actors getting watermarked scripts.

Below, the Emmy nominee gives his first (and quite funny) in-depth must-read interview about all the changes on the new Two and a Half Men:

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So how are things going on that certain CBS sitcom that’s been getting so many headlines this past year?
JON CRYER: You’re talking, of course, about The Big Bang Theory. No, things are going great. Working with Ashton is a blast. Audiences have been going nuts for him. He’s clearly a guy who missed doing sitcoms quite a bit. He just lights up on show night. It’s a lot of fun for he and I because we have to discover what works between us, and he’s game for anything. There’s already — lines have been crossed already that probably never should have been crossed, as you’ll see in the first episode.

So the Men nude teaser poster that was released, that moment might manifest in the first episode?
It may well.

What are the biggest differences working on the show from a year ago?
It’s such a strange combination of the same show and a completely new show. All of us on the set keep referring to the first episode back as the “pilot” by mistake. [Showrunner] Chuck [Lorre] and I were standing around joking about trying to pitch this show and how ridiculous it would sound to a development executive: “The guy’s been divorced and his brother just passed away, but he meets this billionaire with a broken heart and…” It’s like, I would never buy that show. But it’s working amazingly well.

How does the premiere pull off not being too dark or morbid, considering it starts with a main character [Charlie Harper] dying?
This show has never had an ounce of sentimentality; it’s not what we do. There was a moment in the first season where we tried it, then we realized, no, that doesn’t work. This is [handled] with that same lack of sentimentality. Any concerns I had about it were completely washed away by the studio audience we had — which signed nondisclosure agreements — and had a terrific reaction to it.

So after the first episode is there no more looking back, or are there references to Charlie in the later episodes?
The history of the show does not go away at all. It will be dealt with all through the first season. It’s not, “Oh, that character’s gone, let’s forget completely about him.” There will be ramifications all through the season. We’re not taking this into a new universe where the first show didn’t exist.

How do the changes impact Alan?
Well, I don’t know for certain. It’s funny because everybody is signing nondisclosure agreements. The scripts go out with watermarks and every script gets handed to you personally by somebody from the show. They’re being super secretive. And that’s all new, the show has never functioned like that before. But what isn’t new is they’ve never told me what my character is going to go through. They’ve cryptically hinted at stuff. One of the characters will be institutionalized, but they don’t say which character or what kind of institution. I don’t mind that because to me that feels like life — you never know what’s going to happen next. And God knows last year proved that to me.

Are you watching or participating in the Charlie Sheen roast?

NEXT: Alan’s relationship with Kutcher’s character revealed; Sheen’s roast, Kutcher provides stress therapy

Comments (87 total) Add your comment
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  • Johnny Depp is Hot!

    Hope it works! Probably the one who is institutionalized will be Rose! She probably went even more nuts than she already was when Charlie died. lol

    • Brenna

      thats what i was thinking too. I cant wait to see how Rose handles everything throughout the season (hopefully shes around for some episodes)

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    • J. norman

      I hope they don’t make Rose the scapegoat for Charlies (death?).
      She is the best character on the show. I have hopes that she will return in a recurring roll at least.

      • Johnny Depp is Hot!

        I hope they don’t say that Rose killed Charlie! She’s funny!

      • Ren

        I like Rose, she’s such a cutie.

    • SisterZip

      I think Rose transfers her stalking to Alan, lol.

    • Frenchie

      I can’t wait to watch new Evelyn and Berta scenes! they make the show

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  • Pam

    This show is dead for me.
    Charlie was the show and Ashton is not even funny. They should had canceled the show.
    Charlie roast. That is something I won’t miss.

    • @Pam

      So u would rather watch a roast for an alcoholic drug addict? Oh, I forgot wife abuser.

      • dgh

        @@Pam
        Yes I would its gonna be great.

      • petite fleur

        me too i much prefer to watch the roast.

      • Jane

        I would rather watch Charlie. I’m not watching this dumb show anymore.

    • Jack

      My vote is for the roast also!

    • Bob

      Can you at least watch the first episode before writing the show off? Who knows, you may actually LIKE it!

      • Jayanta

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    • MandM mom

      I could not agree more. Charlie was the show with the others as supporting cast. I will continue to watch reruns but will not watch this new show and it it a new show. Two and a half men ended last season. Sorry Jon Cryer but you will stink without Charlie. Ashton will not be anything even close to the talen Charlie was.Stupid Chuck Lorre better hope his other shows do well because this one will be cancelled after this season if it even makes it thru this season

      • Poppy

        Well! If MandM mom says the show will be “cancelled after this season” then it MUST be true!

        I’d much rather put all my eggs in the basket of the drug and alcohol addicted, wife abusing manw*hore.

        MandM mom – you shouldn’t be a mom!

      • Poppy

        Sorry – I meant “I guess “you’d” rather put all a”your” eggs

  • hmmm

    I plan to tune in, not sure if it will work though. But you have to admit that, throughout the whole Sheen and recasting mess, Jon Cryer has shown incredible graciousness, humor, and absolute class. I hope people appreciate that, fans of the show or otherwise. Go Duckie!

    • dgh

      He has really shown just how far his head can be inserted up Chuck Lorre’s a$$!

      • LILI

        @dgh i agree with everything you said !!!!

      • Johnny Depp is Hot!

        Jon is simply doing the job he was hired to do! I wish Charlie had done the same. Now Jon has a job and Charlie is unemployed! How is he gonna pay for his drugs and call girls now? lol

      • bEA

        Charlie will have new jobs (actually he is already in negociations for another tv show) so enjoy the new Two and a Half Men and don’t bother talking or more accurately bashing Charlie Sheen..and by the way Johnny Depp (who is a buddy of Sheen) is too hot for you. so move on…ha ha.

      • Johnny Depp is Hot!

        @bEA, U must be Charlie’s press agent? lol How’s he paying u?

    • Johnny Depp is Hot!

      @hmmm, Agree with everything u said!!!

    • Patty

      I think I said this in the past, I think Jon Cryer and the mother and the housekeepter were the show. Charlie was ok. Sorry Charlie!

  • Pebble

    It will never be the must see show for me again cause the show was Charlie!

  • court

    This new premise just sounds kind of ridiculous. and not in a good way.

  • Annie

    Dear God, I love him so much. Jon C.: well-played, sir!

    • Johnny Depp is Hot!

      @Annie, Amen!!!

    • Lizabeth

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  • T

    Does that mean that the character, Alan will stop being a mooching cheapskate and stop getting his hair cut at the Barber school, dress a little better and finally get a new car – that Volvo wagon must be on it’s last legs by now !

    And what about Herb & Judith and not to mention little Millie Melnick who could be Alan’s kid ?
    Plus, will Kandi be back ?

    And what of Jake ? He’ll be in final year of high school…what he’s going to do afterwards (college ?..yeah, right…he couldn’t be able to get into community college…not even that one over on NBC !) ?

    • Chloe

      Hope Kandi is gone for good; she was the last season or two.

      I still hope Herb is still on teh show; he is priceless! If the writers are as good as before, Jake should get some prime airtime this year. They should have done it last season, but they focused too much on Charlie’s relationship with Chelsea.

  • Doug

    I think it’s a risk killing off Charlie’s character. Hard to laugh about that. I am excited for the new season though.

  • Robin

    Seems pretty lame,not sure i will be interesting in this show anymore..

    • Jane

      They should give duckie his own show. Something entertaining to watch. Not this crap.

      • Denise

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  • stephen

    I certainly will give it a go, it may be weird the first 8-10 eps but if they get a rhythm and make sure charlie is still mentioned all the time, whos to say it wont be a good show. Also season 8 was one of its funniest but not just because of charlie. Alans stories were genius! I wish we got herb and alan staying in the same house instead of a new character. i would of loved to see Alan and Herb in the same house, kicked out by the same women 9 years apart! Would of been funny to watch.. hey if ashton doesnt work out, its an idea for season 10!

  • Marion

    Nice try James Hibberd to praise Jon Cryer..but sorry i don’t call this interview ‘funny’..no wonder tv critics are mocked..no wonder..HAha

  • PennyBeGood

    I’ve always disliked this show. I’ve seen maybe three episodes (usually on in the background.) Never thought it was particularly funny, and I’ve never been a fan of Charlie Sheen. I just don’t get his appeal. I like Jon Cryer, and with Sheen gone I’ll give this show a shot. Having Charlie Sheen’s character die is just weird enough to entice me.

    • Reality check

      Well you are quite sick imo..
      As for his appeal : humor, talent, charisma simple as that and it is thanks to him that Jon Cryer has a career (networks, studios did greenlight the show because of Sheen and Cryer had just lot’s of lot’s of cancelled shows..)

      • Mantu

        Dahl has attracted good films in the past – live aciton and cartoon – perhaps because his books are vividly described, with watertight plots. I’m not looking forward to the already-mentioned-in-interviews-with-Burton family-values ending to Charlie.I think adaptations from novels either work because of the novel being intensely described and beautifully plotted – Silence of the Lambs; Oliver Twist; The Tin Drum – or if the film-maker is radical and bold, such as Ruiz’s Time Regained or Truffaut’s Jules et Jim.Otherwise, its either Merchant Ivory (but why does Henry James make fertile source material?) or else stealing the name but changing the content, as far as I can see (which isn’t that far, as my optician pointed out this morning).

    • Léa

      Tone of the show will not change because Sheen is not here anymore and Cryer had lot’s of airtime already..if you like him so much..all of this shows that your reasons are pretty lame but what make you feel better..

    • Wani

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  • Aidan

    Planes isn’t a Pixar movie it’s Disney!

  • rosie

    Good grief! It’s a tv show for crying out loud! If you want to, watch it, if not, change the dang channel. You all act like your lives depend on it. It’s a show, Charlie’s dead, move on!

    • Brenda

      Thank you. could not agree more. You would think some of these ‘people’ were on Charlie’s payroll. Get over it, he made his choice.

  • KLL

    This all sounds horrible.

    • Newsflash

      What? I didn’t hear anything. I read some stuff.

      • JoMarch

        @newsflash: did you think your comment was clever? Actually, it was doltish. Newsflash for YOU: “sounds” was appropriate in @KLL’s post. Look it up.

      • Newsflash

        I take it back, yeah this show is going to blow.

      • Youssra

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