Charlie Sheen Denies 11th-Hour Negotiating Ploy

Charlie Sheen Denies 11th-Hour Negotiating Ploy

04/09/2010 12:00AM

When Charlie Sheen takes the stage Friday night to tape his CBS hit show Two and a Half Men, the occasion marks more than just the final episode of the show's seventh season. It may also be Sheen's final curtain, the actor tells PEOPLE exclusively.

"Much speculation and rumor has arisen from my current status surrounding Two and a Half Men," Sheen tells PEOPLE in a statement that addresses recent reports on the star's alleged 11th-hour salary negotiations, his willingness to walk away from the show and his life after the series.

"All of the numbers reported in the press are false. Claims from 'inside sources' regarding offers from the studio as well as my salary, on their best day, are without merit. Approaching the start of the current season and as far back as June '09, I submitted my terms for season eight to Warner Bros. and CBS respectfully.

"Both parties have known the score for over a year. In no way, has this been a hasty or negligent eleventh hour surprise. I offer this information out of love and respect to my crew, my on-set family, my writers, executive staff, as well as my real family, my dear friends and my loyal fans. We tape the final episode of the season this evening.



"If tonight's show is the end for me as Charlie Harper, so be it. Another journey has begun. I take from the experience 161 shows filled with a kaleidoscope of amazing experiences, memories, friendships and gratitude. I remain humbly inspired. … C. Sheen"

So is this a negotiation ploy for Sheen to strong-arm more money out of CBS and Warner Brothers? "No. A negotiation ploy is something you do to get the best possible deal," says Sheen's rep Stan Rosenfield. "Charlie told them what he wanted a year ago."

Sheen, who faces domestic violence charges stemming from a Christmas Day fight with wife Brooke Mueller, entered rehab on Feb. 24 as “a preventative measure” and has been returning to rehab after work each night.

After he tapes Friday's taping -- the seventh season's 22nd episode -- he will have fulfilled his contract. -- Elizabeth Leonard

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