LOS ANGELES — US star Charlie Sheen, under fire for drunken, drug-fueled rages and rants, vowed on Monday to sue the producers who canceled his hit television show, saying he would return to work for a 50 percent raise.
In two rambling, but coherent, television interviews conducted over the weekend, Sheen said his network, CBS, and the producers of his show, “Two and a Half Men”, would be forced to pay him for closing down the show before finishing its eighth season.
Asked by ABC news what he would be seeking as compensation, he laughingly relied, “Tons.”
“They’re going to actually put it on a scale and go, ‘a little more, a little more, add some gold. Bingo!'”
“I’m here to collect,” he said. “They’re going to lose. They’re going to lose in a courtroom.”
He told NBC he would return to work, but demanded his take jump from about $2 million dollars per episode to $3 million dollars.
“I’ll finish the show, I’ll even do season 10 if they want me to, but at this point, because of psychological stress — oh my god — it’s $3 mil an episode, take it or leave it.”
“Look what they’ve put me through. Because I’m underpaid right now. I’m tired of pretending like I’m not special,” he said.
The father of five was interviewed at home, accompanied by his two girlfriends, who he called “the goddesses”. He was unapologetic about his drug use, calling his parties “epic”, although he acknowledged that the last time he took drugs, he had probably taken “more than anybody could survive”.
Asked by NBC if he was worried his young children would be embarrassed by his behavior some day, he said, “God, no. Talk about an education.”
He repeated claims he had stopped just by force of will and said he was never afraid of an overdose.
“Dying’s for fools,” he told ABC. “I’m too smart. Too smart to do that. Sorry to the guys that happened to. You should have read the directions before you showed up to party.”
On Thursday, CBS shut down production of “Two and a Half Men” after Sheen took to calling radio programs to denounce the show’s creator, Chuck Lorre.
In a series of statements to radio and the TMZ celebrity website, Sheen railed against Lorre, referring to him as Chaim Levine, the Hebrew translation of the TV producer’s name.
“Last I checked, Chaim, I spent close to the last decade effortlessly and magically converting your tin cans into pure gold. And the gratitude I get is this charlatan chose not to do his job, which is to write,” he said.
Using the Hebrew forced Sheen to later deny he was anti-Semitic.
“I was referring to Chuck by his real name, because I wanted to address the man, not the bullshit TV persona,” he told TMZ, which said Lorre’s birth name is Charles Levine.
The TV series about hedonistic jingle writer Charlie Harper — played by Sheen — has been a hit since it was launched in 2003 and has been nominated for numerous awards, including nods for Sheen at the Emmys and Golden Globes.
The Nielsen ratings agency listed it in fifth place in its latest TV shows survey, with 14.5 million viewers for its last aired episode.
In November, the star filed for divorce from his wife of two years, days after being taken to hospital following a reported drunken incident at a luxury New York hotel involving a porn star.
In addition to his reported substance abuse, Sheen had several run-ins with the law in the 1990s in cases related to drugs, domestic violence and prostitution.