Former Two and a Half Men star Charlie Sheen is planning his return to series television in Anger Management, a new sitcom loosely based on Revolution Studios’ 2003 hit comedy feature of the same name. Lionsgate-owned Debmar-Mercury, headed by Co-Presidents Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein, will distribute the series that will be produced by Lionsgate Television, led by Television Group President Kevin Beggs and COO Sandra Stern; Joe Roth and Revolution Studios’ Vince Totino; Sheen manager Mark Burg‘s production company, Evolution Management; and Robert Maron.
Sheen will retain a significant ownership stake in the series inspired by the film, in which a mild-mannered, non-confrontational man is ordered to attend group anger management sessions led by a therapist who could probably use some anger management himself.
“I chose Anger Management because, while it might be a big stretch for me to play a guy with serious anger management issues, I think it is a great concept,” Sheen said. “It also provides me with real ownership in the series, a certain amount of creative control and the chance to be back in business with one of my favorite movie producers of all time, Joe Roth.”
Roth and Sheen have worked together on five features, including Major League, Young Guns and Three Musketeers.
“Who better than Charlie Sheen to tackle Anger Management,” Roth said. “With Charlie’s incredible talent and comedic gifts, he remains the leading man of TV sitcoms. I’m excited to collaborate with him once again.”
Roth is also currently working with Lionsgate’s Debmar-Mercury and Ice Cube’s Cube Vision on the TBS hit Are We There Yet? It is one of three hugely successful sitcoms (along with Tyler Perry‘s House of Payne and Meet The Browns) that are the result of a unique sitcom business model created by Marcus and Bernstein.
Marcus and Bernstein said in a joint statement, “Our sitcom model is all about building well-known brands around extraordinary talents like Charlie that, thanks to their large profit participation, are highly motivated to succeed. It’s not every day you can roll out a sitcom featuring the star of the biggest TV comedy of the past decade.”
“We always look for series ideas that are noisy, accessible and relevant,” said Lionsgate’s Kevin Beggs. “Charlie Sheen in Anger Management takes those criteria to a whole new level and we are thrilled to be in business with him, Evolution, Debmar-Mercury and Revolution Studios on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. With a star of Charlie’s magnitude, a producer as venerable as Joe Roth and a branded property as compelling as Anger Management, this show has unique upside while still adhering to our disciplined business model.”
Said Burg, one of the creative forces behind Lionsgate’s SAW franchise, the most popular long-running horror franchise of all time, and a former executive producer of Two and a Half Men, “We have been fielding numerous offers for Charlie since his departure from Two and a Half Men, but none were as creatively and financially compelling as the package that Lionsgate, Debmar-Mercury, and Revolution presented us with Anger Management.”
The deal was negotiated on behalf of Debmar-Mercury and Lionsgate by Sandra Stern. Sheen was represented by Jake Bloom and Leigh Brecheen of Bloom, Hergott, Diemer, Rosenthal, Laviolette & Feldman. Revolution and Joe Roth were represented by Matt Johnson of Ziffren Brittenham LLP.