In the end, Chuck Lorre was the winner. After months of rumors that Charlie Sheen was set to make an appearance on the series finale of “Two and a Half Me,” the CBS show runner had the final say. Literally. The long-running CBS sitcom ended with Lorre delivering Sheen’s trademark, “Winning!” before a piano fell on him. But in an interview with Entertainment Weekly posted on Thursday, Lorre said that wasn’t the way the finale was originally written.
After acknowledging that he was aware that fans of the show wanted to see Sheen return for the finale, Lorre said producers approached the actor about making a cameo on the episode, but it didn’t pan out. “We reached out to him four, five weeks ago,” Lorre revealed. “He would look in the camera and have his moment. The whole idea was for him to have a monologue into the camera. That felt like a radical final moment for the finale… but he didn’t like the idea and that’s the way it goes. We were hoping we could make it work. It was not meant to be.”
In a vanity card that was shown at the end of the episode, Lorre explained the absence of the former “Two and a Half men” star:
“I know a lot of you might be disappointed that you didn’t get to see Charlie Sheen in tonight’s finale. For the record, he was offered a role. Our idea was to have him walk up to the front door in the last scene, ring the doorbell, then turn, look directly into the camera and go off on a maniacal rant about the dangers of drug abuse. He would then explain that these dangers only applied to average people. That he was far from average. He was a ninja warrior from Mars. He was invincible.
And then we would drop a piano on him. We thought it was funny. He didn’t.
Instead, he wanted us to write a heartwarming scene that would set up his return to primetime TV in a new sitcom called ‘The Harpers’ starring him and Jon Cryer. We thought that was funny too.”
While he was never actually seen, Sheen’s deceased character, Charlie Harper, loomed over the entire hour-long episode with a storyline that questioned if he really died in a train wreck. But in the end, the character was never resurrected – at least not by Sheen. Instead, someone who looked like Harper was shown from the back just seconds before a piano dropped on his head.
Sheen addressed his absence from the “Two and a Half Men” finale with a tweet posted on Thursday, teasing his upcoming appearance on ABC’s “The Goldbergs” next week. “Attention World,” the actor wrote. “If you’re looking for my much anticipated cameo on network TV, you’ll have to check out ‘The Goldbergs’ Wed Feb. 25th on ABC! I go where the love is.”
Sheen was an original cast member of “Two and a Half Men” until 2011, when he was fired following a public tirade against Lorre. But while the actor had a notorious falling out with his boss, he expressed interest in returning to the CBS comedy for the series finale, telling TV Guide last fall that he personally approached the network. “I’ve reached out to them and they’ve reached back,” he said at the time. “We’re trying to figure out what makes the most sense. If they figure it out like I’ve presented it to them and they want to include me in some final send-off, I’m available and I’m showing up early. If not, it’s on them.”