Charlie Sheen dropped a bomb on fans Tuesday morning when he announced on the Today Show that he is HIV positive. However the 50-year-old actor said he is healthy and plans to continue acting.
In a one-on-one interview the former Two and a Half Men star told Matt Lauer he’s been living with the diagnosis for four years. He did not disclose how he contracted virus. Sheen brought his doctor along to testify he is healthy and has a nearly undetectable viral load.
Sheen decided to publicize the news now to avoid a news leak.
Since discovering the news, Sheen said he’s paid over $10 million in shakedowns to keep his status secret.
The 50-year-old actor said he is now in bad financial straits but is hopeful that there will be future acting opportunities. Sheen said he is working on a few movies and is hopeful that he will have a show once again.
The comedic actor made a name for himself in movies Hot Shots and Wall Street. Two and Half Men made him one of the highest paid sitcom actors in Hollywood.
However his drug abuse and alcohol addiction made Sheen unmanageable, and he was fired from the show. His career seemed over after a drug-fueled interview in which Sheen claimed he had “tiger blood,” and he was “bi-winning.” The interview quickly made the rounds on the Internet, becoming the subject of comical memes and even a music video.
“There’s a lot out there I’m not proud of. You can only hear ‘winning’ in the streets so many times,” he told Today. “I’ve pissed off a lot of really good opportunities.”
He made a minor comeback with the 2012 FX series Anger management, but the show was canceled in 2014 when ratings dwindled.
Sheen said he hopes that Tuesday’s interview will mark the beginning of a new era in his life.
“It’s not great. It will be great again. I’m a survivor. I’ve been up, I’ve been down, I’ve been rich, I’ve been poor,” he said. “It’s another chapter in my life but it’s not commerce driven. It’s socially driven.”