Who Is Charlie Sheen?
Charlie Sheen landed a breakthrough role in Oliver Stone's Platoon and went on to star in action films, dramas and comedies, as well as the TV sitcom Two and a Half Men. Sheen increasingly became known for his volatile behavior, drawing headlines for his substance abuse, bizarre interviews and antics with adult film stars. In November 2015, he revealed he is HIV-positive.
Actor Charlie Sheen was born Carlos Irwin Estévez on September 3, 1965, in New York City. The son of Janet and veteran actor Martin Sheen, he and his siblings, Ramon Jr., Emilio and Renee, were all encouraged to pursue acting careers. Sheen made his acting debut at the age of 9, as an extra in the renowned TV film The Execution of Private Slovik (1974), which starred his father. As a teen, he produced and directed a slew of low-budget film shorts with childhood friends and future stars Rob Lowe and Sean Penn.
A somewhat lackadaisical student, Sheen was expelled from Santa Monica High School a few weeks shy of receiving his diploma. He focused instead on his desire to act, seeking out and landing a role in the never-released horror film Grizzly II: The Predator (1984). Later that year, Sheen made his adult cinematic debut in the Soviet invasion thriller Red Dawn.
After a handful of TV movies, Sheen landed the breakthrough role of his career in Oliver Stone’s autobiographical war drama Platoon (1986). He earned kudos for his brutally realistic portrayal of a young soldier's tour of duty in Vietnam, while the film won four Oscars, including Best Picture. The following year, Sheen costarred in Stone’s Wall Street as the ruthless protégé Bud Fox, who is seduced by the wealth and power of corporate raider Gordon Gekko (played by Michael Douglas).
As part of an ensemble that included John Cusack, Christopher Lloyd, and D.B. Sweeney, Sheen gave a notable performance in John Sayles’ gripping account of the 1919 “Black Sox” baseball scandal Eight Men Out (1988). After starring in the 1990 action films Navy SEALS and The Rookie, he showcased his flair for comedy in the mindlessly entertaining spoof Hot Shots (1991). In 1993, Sheen reprised his role as maverick air force pilot Topper Harley in the equally successful sequel Hot Shots! Part Deux.
In the late 1990s, Sheen formed a production company with Bret Michaels. Directed by Michaels and starring Sheen, the two collaborated on the TV film No Code of Conduct (1998). In 2000, Sheen and his brother Emilio headlined the controversial biopic Rated X. Based on the life of porn industry pioneers Jim and Artie Mitchell, the film was screened at the Sundance Film Festival and later premiered on cable TV. Also in 2000, Sheen replaced Michael J. Fox as deputy mayor on the hit sitcom Spin City.
In 2003, he starred in the panned horror spoof Scary Movie 3 for director David Zucker. Sheen then landed a starring role as beleaguered bachelor Charlie Harper on the CBS sitcom Two and a Half Men. At one point Sheen was reportedly paid $1.8 million per episode, making him the highest-paid actor on television.
Notorious for his recurrent battles with drugs and alcohol, Sheen was again the subject of negative publicity when he served as the star witness in the 1995 trial of Hollywood madam Heidi Fleiss. He confessed to spending an excess of $50,000 to purchase sexual services from 27 different prostitutes. The following year, Sheen was arrested and charged with the assault of former girlfriend Brittany Ashland. Pleading no contest to the battery, he received a suspended sentence and two years of probation.
In June 2002, Sheen wed actress Denise Richards in Los Angeles; the couple has two daughters, Sam and Lola. In January 2006, the couple announced they were divorcing. Sheen's previous marriage to model Donna Peele ended in divorce in 1996, after one year of marriage. He also has a daughter, Cassandra Sheen, with high-school sweetheart Paula Profitt.
In May 2008, Sheen married Brooke Mueller, a real estate investor. In May 2009, Mueller gave birth to twins, Bob and Max. Sheen and Mueller divorced in 2011. Sheen became engaged for the fourth time to former porn actress Brett (Scottiine) Rossi in February 2014, but the couple parted ways that October.
Bad Boy Image
While he starred on the top-rated sitcom on television, Sheen's bad boy image took on a life of its own. In December 2009, he was arrested for assaulting his wife, Mueller, and spent 30 days in a rehab center. In October 2010, Sheen ran into trouble again when he was arrested for causing $7,000 of damages in an alcohol and cocaine-fueled bender.
Sheen's personality took a toll on his career in February 2011, when a conflict with Two and a Half Men creator Chuck Lorre led Warner Brothers to stop production on the remaining episodes of the season and ban Sheen from the production lot. Sheen's vitriol continued to rise and Warner Brothers and CBS ultimately fired Sheen. “After careful consideration, Warner Bros. Television has terminated Charlie Sheen’s services on Two and a Half Men effective immediately,” the company statement read. Sheen had been under contract to complete several more episodes of the current season and 24 episodes in the next season. That May, it was announced that Ashton Kutcher would join the cast of the show as a replacement for Sheen.
At the same time, Sheen embarked on a series of now-infamous interviews. Rambling and defiant, Sheen said that he drinks "tiger blood," and is on a drug "named Charlie Sheen." Sheen insisted he was sober during the interviews. In April, he began a nationwide tour called "My Violent Torpedo of Truth/Defeat Is Not an Option."
After his public meltdowns, 2012 found Sheen back on television as the star of Anger Management. The show ended in late 2014.
In November 2015, Sheen announced he is HIV-positive, having been diagnosed four years prior. “It’s a hard three letters to absorb. It’s a turning point in one’s life,” he told Matt Lauer on the Today show. Since his diagnosis, Sheen claims he's been regimented on taking medication to manage his disease.
More trouble surfaced for the actor in 2018, when it was revealed that he owed nearly $5 million in in back taxes for the year 2015. Around that time, he placed his Beverly Hills estate on the market for $10 million.
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