Charlie Sheen, her ex-husband, is playing one of his most famous roles because of Denise Richards’ encouragement.
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum, 52, disclosed on the most recent episode of the Just B with Bethenny Frankel podcast that she persuaded Sheen to portray Charlie Harper on Two and a Half Men.
She said to host Bethenny Frankel, “He got Two and a Half Men while I was pregnant [with daughter Sami].” “He was anxious to launch a new television program following Spin City’s cancellation. By the way, after reading the [Two and a Half Men] script, I was like, ‘You have to do this show.'”
“He was going to do a different show,” she added. “And I read the script and I go, ‘You’re crazy for not doing this.'”
Sheen went on to be part of the show’s cast for eight seasons from 2003 to 2011. During his tenure, he earned two Golden Globe nominations and four Emmy nominations.
Richards also recalled the popularity of the show having an impact on Sheen’s sobriety, saying, “I think because [of] the success of Two and a Half Men and the money, I think that led to him getting back into not being sober.”
While the actress noted that she didn’t want to speak for her ex-husband about the show’s impact, she shared, “All I know is he was no longer the person that I married and no longer sober.”
Richards filed for divorce in 2006 while she was six months pregnant with the couple’s second daughter Lola, sharing, “It wasn’t like I moved out and we had a little separation.”
“When I filed, basically [Sheen] went to work, I packed a suitcase and took our daughter [Sami], who is not even one, and went to the Beverly Hills Hotel. I went to file for divorce and then went to a fitting for a pilot I was doing,” she added.
She claimed her parents were “very supportive” of the marriage as Sheen, who was sober when they met, “was very different than what the public saw when he spiraled after all that stuff…when he was fired [from Two and a Half Men].”
Sheen was fired from the Two and a Half Men after insulting creator Chuck Lorre in a series of rants. He was replaced by Ashton Kutcher, who played a billionaire businessman who bought Charlie’s house after his death until the show concluded in 2015.
Following his firing, Sheen got sober. During an interview on ITV’s Loose Women in 2019, Sheen admitted that it was hard looking back at footage of his downfall.
“It feels awful. I can’t sit there and lie to you,” he said. “Some of it is very surreal. To this day, I am not sure how I created such chaos and wound up in that headspace. It’s as though there was some alien or demonic possession going on.”
Two years later in February 2021, Sheen expressed his regret for the way he behaved amid his bitter public feud with Lorre.
He told Yahoo! Entertainment, “There were 55 different ways I could have handled that situation, and I went with number 56.” “And so, you know, I think the growth for me post-meltdown or melt forward or melt somewhere — however you want to label it — it has to start with absolute ownership of my role in all of it.”
Twelve years after their public spat, Lorre and Sheen have reconciled in advance of their next television series, How to Be a Bookie.