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Fact-checking Charlie Sheen: Were the 'Men' scripts really not ready?

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Image Credit: Glenn Harris/PR Photos; Chris Hatcher/PR PhotosAmong the various complaints that Charlie Sheen has lodged against Two and A Half Men creator Chuck Lorre — and boy, there have been plenty  — was the claim that the uber-writer/producer was never in a position to resume production on TV’s No. 1 comedy because he hadn’t written any new stories for the show. “Why is it that when I was ready to return to work, you told me there were no scripts ready to shoot?” Sheen said during this week’s interview with Today. It turns out, however, that like many of Sheen’s comments, that one wasn’t entirely grounded in reality.

The actor first made the comment after the Jan. 28 hiatus, when he claimed to have been ready for work after only a short time in rehabilitation. While Lorre isn’t doing any interviews, at least one insider has come to his defense in regards to the writer’s efforts on Men. During the February hiatus, Lorre — who not only had the future of Men to worry about but the livelihood of 300-some members of the show’s crew — dispatched some of his Men scribes to his other CBS shows, The Big Bang Theory and Mike & Molly, so they would be able to keep working while the issue with Sheen was resolved.

Once CBS and Warner Bros. TV announced that production would resume on Feb. 28, the Men scribes were back in business on a script involving Sheen’s character sleeping with another man, as reported by TV Line. But the show was put on ice yet again after Sheen went on his first bizarre radio rant. Now that production on Men has been halted for the rest of the season, some of the writers are expected to work on Theory and Molly until further notice.

So when, if ever, will Sheen see another Men script? That’s up to Lorre and Warner Bros. TV, which have to decide whether Sheen’s claims of sobriety can be believed and whether he’s capable of completing a ninth season. Though the actor is threatening a lawsuit and continuing to spew hatred toward Lorre, he’s made it clear in interviews that he wants to go back to work to “keep on making good television.” A decision could be made by May, when CBS presents its fall lineup to advertisers in New York.