UPDATED: Despite ending its 10-episode original run on a lower ratings note last week, Anger Management, the sitcom starring Charlie Sheen and created/executive produced by Bruce Helford, has landed a 90-episode order from FX. Overall, episodes 2-10 met a designated average ratings threshold, triggering an automatic, additional 90-episode order from the network, said Chuck Saftler, EVP of FX Networks. “We set a very high ratings bar that included some additional hurdles for Anger Management to earn its back-90 order and the series met and exceeded those metrics,” he said. “Bruce Helford has created a sitcom that works extremely well in our pre-10 PM programming lineup. Charlie Sheen and the entire cast did an amazing job in the first ten episodes, which were produced in a very tight window. I have no doubt that the producers and cast will be able to pull off the Herculean task of producing 90 episodes over the next two years.” According to FX, Anger Management is the highest-rated new comedy series on cable in 2012, averaging 4.53 million Total Viewers (cumed) and 2.5 million Adults 18-49. A month ago, FX president John Landgraf said at TCA that “the odds are overwhelming” for a pickup of the series, which had been authorized to start work on Season 2. There are about 8-10 scripts already ready to shoot.
The pickup represents a major victory for Lionsgate, which bet on Sheen when he was still reeling from the controversy surrounding his public meltdown and subsequent firing from Two And A Half Men that prompted many to brand him “unhireable.” With the company’s CEO Jon Feltheimer spearheading the project, Lionsgate bankrolled the first 10 episodes with the hope that a back order would follow. As recently announced, Sheen’s father, Martin Sheen will join the cast of Anger Management in a recurring role for the back 90 episodes, playing Martin Goodson, Charlie’s father. “Charlie Sheen is one of the great comedy superstars of our generation, Bruce Helford is an exceptional showrunner and FX has been a visionary partner who recognized the show’s tremendous potential from the outset,” said Kevin Beggs, President of the Lionsgate Television Group. Lionsgate’s Debmar-Mercury division will now proceed with selling the 100-episode series into off-network syndication starting in September 2014, co-Presidents Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein said.
The series premiere episode of Anger Management (6/28/12) was the most-watched primetime scripted comedy series premiere in cable history. In Anger Management, Sheen stars as Charlie Goodson, a non-traditional anger management therapist who has anger management issues of his own. Selma Blair, Shawnee Smith, Daniela Bobadilla, Michael Arden, Noureen DeWulf, Derek Richardson and Barry Corbin co-star. Bruce Helford serves as Executive Producer/Showrunner. Mark Burg, Joe Roth, Dave Caplan and Vince Totino are Executive Producers. Anger Management is produced by Lionsgate TV and distributed by Debmar-Mercury.
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