"Two and a Half Men" creator Chuck Lorre's attorney Howard Weitzman responded today in a statement to a lawsuit filed by Charlie Sheen against Lorre and Warner Bros.
"The allegations in the complaint against Mr. Lorre are as recklessly false and unwarranted as Mr. Sheen's rantings in the media. These accusations are simply imaginary. This lawsuit is about a fantasy 'lottery' pay-day for Charlie Sheen. Chuck Lorre's concern has been and continues to be about Mr. Sheen's health," read the statement.
Sheen is suing on behalf of the crew and demanding to be paid for the eight scrapped "Two and a Half Men" episodes, totaling more than $100 million.
Warner Bros. declined to comment.
"Chuck Lorre, one of the richest men in television who is worth hundreds of millions of dollars, believes himself to be so wealthy and powerful that he can unilaterally decide to take money away from the dedicated cast and crew of the popular television series, 'Two and a Half Men,' in order to serve his own ego and self-interest, and make the star of the series the scapegoat for Lorre's own conduct," Marty Singer, Sheen's attorney, wrote in the lawsuit's preamble. Lorre is the main subject for derision in the court filing.
The suit also alleges that Warner Bros. violated Sheen's Fair Employment and Housing Act rights against harassment and discrimination in employment because of his alleged medical condition.
"WB has accused Mr. Sheen of having physical and mental disabilities," the filing says. "According to WB, health care experts have observed Mr. Sheen in an alleged 'manic' and/or 'bipolar' state; other health-care experts have described Mr. Sheen as suffering from 'hypomanic' psychological state. WB further claims Mr. Sheen has had a rapid physical and mental deterioration of this condition. WB bluntly states that Mr. Sheen is very ill," according to the court document.
The filing notes that "on or about March 7, 2011, WB refused to reasonably accommodate Mr. Sheen from Warner Bros. claim that Mr. Sheen has an alleged illness and need for medical care and/or treatment when it terminated his employment contract. Rather than accommodate Mr. Sheen for Warner Bros. claim that Mr. Sheen has alleged physical and mental disabilities, WB instead terminated Mr. Sheen's employment agreement."
The allegation by Sheen is that his termination is a violation of FEHA Against Defendant (Fair Employment and Housing Act).
Sheen's attorney's cite various examples of "harassing statements" Mr. Lorre made in his "vanity cards" that appear at the end of Mr. Lorre's shows that target "Mr. Sheen's alleged illness." Sheen's lawyers say the five listed in the court filing contain obvious references to Mr. Sheen. Here is one example:
Without his nearly $2-million-per-episode salary from "Two and a Half Men," Charlie Sheen has been forced to find new ways to score some cash. But replacing that salary hasn't been easy.