Charlie Sheen finally turned up on a TV show other than a news program when he suddenly stormed on to the stage of “Jimmy Kimmel Live” Monday night and kissed Kimmel on the lips.
It was Sheen’s first in-person appearance on a late-night comedy show in the weeks since production of his sitcom, “Two and a Half Men,” was suspended because of his apparent out-of-control partying. Of course, he’s been the subject of a thousand late-night monologue jokes since he launched the media blitz that got the whole country talking about “winning” and “tiger blood.”
His attention-getting campaign on TV, radio and the Internet – in which he alternately denied and admitted using drugs, while also preaching his “violent hatred” of CBS, Warner Brothers Television and executive producer Chuck Lorre – has other TV execs and assorted moguls eager to do business with him, despite (or maybe because of) his erratic behavior. One of them, colorful Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, was Kimmel’s guest Monday night. And it was after Kimmel asked Cuban about rumors that Cuban has been talking to Sheen about future projects that the wayward CBS sitcom star burst out of the wings and into the spotlight.
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Naturally, the “Kimmel” audience went wild as Sheen strode across the stage, beckoned Kimmel to come close and then kissed the surprised host (at least, Kimmel looked as surprised as the rest of us) on the lips.
“Your lips are very moist,” Sheen commented after he’d sat down, though, for some reason, he couldn’t seem to sit still for long. Reaching into a bag he’d brought with him, Sheen pulled out a pile of new T-shirts imprinted with images of his face and his now-famous words “winning” and “tiger blood” (the “tiger blood” t-shirt had a photo of a kitten) and flung them into the studio audience while striding back and forth across the stage.
His last “giveaway” item was a coffee mug he presented to Kimmel that had several drawings of foxes Scotch-taped to it. Kimmel asked him what that meant and Sheen wouldn’t give him a straight answer, though it was obvious that the fox pictures were a reference to the rumors that Fox TV execs had recently met with Sheen to talk about some TV show ideas, including having Sheen host his own late-night show.
Of course, Sheen would likely go to Fox or some other network only if he can’t make a lucrative deal to return to “Two and a Half Men.” And a return to the sitcom is seeming more and more likely lately as rumors continue to swirl that CBS is actively courting him. The latest was a Tweet from NBC News correspondent Jeff Rossen, who interviewed Sheen extensively a few weeks ago.
Sheen’s appearance on “Kimmel” lasted only three or four minutes. Just before jumping up to leave, he told Kimmel he couldn’t stay. “I have a show to write,” Sheen said, probably referring to the live stage show he’s planning to take on tour that’s been selling out in cities such as Chicago, Detroit and New York.
For his part, Cuban confirmed that he too is talking about TV projects with Sheen for Cuban’s own TV network, HDNet. “A lot of different things,” is all Cuban would answer when Kimmel asked him what he and Sheen have been discussing. “He’s a smart guy,” Cuban said of Sheen. “He doesn’t get near the credit that he deserves for being smart.” That seemed to be Sheen’s cue because it was at that moment that he leapt onstage.
Cuban was on the Kimmel show primarily to promote his own current TV project – ABC’s entrepreneurial reality-competition series “Shark Tank,” in which Cuban is one of the sharks.
“Shark Tank” returns for its second season this Friday night at 8/7c on ABC.