The much-publicized exit of co-star Selma Blair from Charlie Sheen‘s FX series Anger Management has resulted in what Sheen told Jay Leno last night is “Anger Management 2.0” — which apparently means his character Charlie Goodson is now a little bit more like his old character Charlie Harper. “The problem was that people were still excited about the Two And a Half character and thinking the Anger Management character was a little…dull”, Sheen said in explaining the creative shake-up. “So, um, that is not the case anymore.” Blair left the series in June midway through its 100-episode order after she was “fired” by Sheen via a salty text message. Production continued as scheduled as the show was retooled.
Jason Shuman and his Blue Star Entertainment filed the original $50 million lawsuit in April 2012, alleging that Anger Management producer Joe Roth reneged on an agreement with the consultant for work he had done for Roth’s Revolution Studios on developing Anger Management into a TV series for FX. Roth later countersued, asking the court to declare that Shuman’s consultant agreement had been terminated. According to papers filed Friday in Los Angeles Superior Court (read here), Roth and Shuman reached a settlement. The terms were not released. A trial in LA Superior Court was scheduled for next April.
2ND UPDATE: Charlie Sheen Fired Selma Blair From ‘Anger Management’ Via Text, Show To Continue Production As Scheduled
2ND UPDATE 6:10 PM: I’ve learned more details about Selma Blair‘s shocking dismissal from Anger Management. I hear Charlie Sheen “fired” her via text, in which he called the actress a “c–t”. And it was not the only abusive, expletives-filled text she had received from Sheen, who also serves as an executive producer on Anger Management. I also hear that Blair was not the only member of the show’s cast and crew that was frustrated by Sheen’s work habits as I hear they would often sit and wait for hours for him to show up for work. Although it was Blair voicing her concerns that got Sheen to flip out and get her sacked. I hear Blair’s role as Charlie’s therapist will not be recast. Probably not coincidentally, I hear the series just sent out a notice about a new female regular who is expected to fill the void left by Blair. The producers likely will use Blair’s exit for another creative makeover following the recent tweaking following Anger Management‘s sagging ratings. But, while the show took an unplanned hiatus for the recent creative retool, it is now expected to stay in production as scheduled, with the writers making changes prompted by Blair’s departure on the fly. Anger Management is roughly halfway through its 100-episode order from FX. As for Blair, word is that she is being paid per her contract and no legal action is in the cards, at least not for now.
UPDATE TUESDAY 5:15 PM: What Charlie Sheen wants, he gets. After mounting a campaign to get his co-star on the FX comedy series Selma Blair fired over alleged comments questioning his work ethic, it’s mission accomplished for Sheen, who reportedly threatened to quit the show if Blair stayed. Anger Management producer Lionsgate just issued a statement, making Blair’s dismissal from the show official. “We are confirming that Selma Blair will not be returning to Anger Management, and we wish her the very best.”
PREVIOUS MONDAY PM: The producers of FX‘s Anger Management and reps for Selma Blair are hunkered down today trying to patch things up following a scathing TMZ report posted in the middle of the night that series star and executive producer Charlie Sheen was dead set on firing his co-star over alleged complaints about Sheen she had made to other Anger Management producers. There is no official word on Blair’s status on the show with everyone involved keeping mum, but in a recent tweet posted on the show’s first day back from a monthlong hiatus for creative tweaking in light of the recent ratings slump, Blair was more than complimentary of Sheen: “Thanks for a great day back ” . You looked pretty darn handsome.
‘Expendables 3′ Woos Jackie Chan, Wesley Snipes, Nic Cage & Milla Jovovich As Lionsgate CEO Talks Up Plans
Production of the action movie is due to begin in August and the studio is in “advanced negotiations” with Jackie Chan, Wesley Snipes, Nic Cage and Milla Jovovich, Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer told analysts this morning. In other production news, the exec says that four episodes of Anger Management will air on Fox in June. And Lionsgate has begun to shop a TV sitcom starring Martin Lawrence and Kelsey Grammer. “Nearly every network will hear the pitch in the next few weeks, and we have a high degree of confidence” that it will be on the air next year, Feltheimer says. Execs also say that they believe they’ll find conventional TV outlets that will be willing to syndicate Orange Is The New Black. The studio is producing the action-comedy for Netflix, which plans to introduce it July 11. “It is uncharted territory” in a business where productions typically go from TV networks to digital, not the other way around, Lionsgate Television president Kevin Beggs says. Still, “these lines are blurring” and “we’re pretty confident about this reverse windowing.”
I hear actor Charlie Sheen has parted ways with longtime manager Mark Burg. It is unclear if the separation is permanent, but if the duo’s history is any indication, we shouldn’t bet on it. The two have had fallings-out before, most notably during Sheen’s epic spring 2011 meltdown, but they’ve reconciled. Even if Sheen is not a client of Burg’s anymore, the two remain business partners as they both serve as executive producers on Sheen’s FX comedy series Anger Management, which is 40 episodes into its 100-episode (10+90) order. I hear there were no signs of a Sheen-Burg separation on the set of the show this week, and Anger Management producers appeared unaware of any change in the duo’s relationship. Sheen performed his duties on the show until Friday when he left the set due to illness. He is slated to do The Tonight Show With Jay Leno on Wednesday.
FX’s ‘Sunny’ Likely To Go To Season 10, ‘Anger Management’ To Air 45 Eps A Year, John Landgraf On AMC Showrunner Firings
It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia is the only one of what FX president John Landgraf called the “four cornerstones” of FX (The Shield, Rescue Me, Nip/Tuck and Sunny) that is still on the air. The comedy has already been renewed for a ninth season, and it will likely won’t be the last. “There is a high likelihood for a 10th season,” Landgraf said during the FX portion of TCA this morning. “Whether it goes beyond that depends on whether the people who created the show want to go and whether the audience still wants to watch. But there will definitely be one more year, probably two.”
Landgraf also shed light on FX’s scheduling plans for the back 90 episodes of Charlie Sheen’s Anger Management. “It will stay on the air with no interruption for two years, basically 45 episodes a year,” Landgraf said. That means that, save for major holidays and sports pre-emptions, there will be an original of Anger Management on Thursday night for two years, starting with the Season 2 premiere January 17. The biggest change made following the initial 10 episodes was the addition of Martin Sheen as Charlie Sheen’s father for a multi-generational dimension on the series.
Aeon Buys Out WB Stake In Japan Cinemas
Japanese retail giant Aeon Group will acquire Warner Bros Entertainment’s 50% stake in the Japanese theater circuit Warner Mycal, Film Business Asia reports. A major exhibitor in Japan with 60 theaters and 496 screens, Warner Mycal was launched in 1993 as a partnership of Warner and Aeon, which was known at the time as Mycal. Aeon’s purchase is expected to close in February or March. Aeon separately owns some 70 complexes with 600 screens. Bringing the Warner Mycal theaters under its wholly owned umbrella is expected to make Aeon the largest movie theatre operator in Japan. Current market leader is Toho Cinemas. Aeon did not disclose the value of Warner Mycal. Warner Bros International Cinemas has been a multiplex cinema pioneer, opening more than 170 theatres with almost 1,600 screens in 11 countries including Portugal, Japan, Holland, Italy, China, and Taiwan. Most have been sold to local companies.
On the heels of Charlie Sheen’s comedy Anger Management getting a back 90-episode order from FX, the series has been sold in broadcast syndication. The Fox Television Stations have picked up the sitcom for a September 2014 launch in a cash plus barter deal.
Anger Management is produced by Lionsgate Television, with its sibling Debmar-Mercury handling the syndication sales of the show. Debmar-Mercury is the company that introduced the 10-90 model (an initial 10-episode order followed by a 90-episode pickup if ratings targets are met) with Tyler Perry’s House Of Payne. That sitcom, which ran on TBS, also sold to the Fox TV Stations in broadcast syndication, mostly on the company’s duopoly stations. Anger Management will run on a mix of Fox O&Os and duopoly outlets. The stations that will carry Anger Management include WNYW FOX 5/WWOR My9 (New York), KTTV FOX 11/KCOP My13 (Los Angeles), WFLD FOX 32/WPWR My50 (Chicago),
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.