A leading man who has displayed a knack for action, comedy, and dramatic roles, Charlie Sheen is nearly as well known for his offscreen exploits as for his acting, though after suffering through scandals that would have ended many performers' careers, he overcame bad press and bad habits to enjoy a major comeback on television in the late '90s. Charlie Sheen was born Carlos Irwin Estevez to actor Martin Sheen (born Ramon Estevez) and his wife, Janet Templeton, on September 3rd, 1965. By all accounts, young Charlie wasn't an especially distinguished student; though he was a star on Santa Monica High School's baseball team, he was expelled due to poor attendance and bad grades only a few weeks before his class graduated. During his school days, Sheen developed an interest in filmmaking, making amateur Super-8 films starring his school friends (who included Rob Lowe and Sean Penn), and after leaving school, Sheen decided to take a stab at an acting career, like his father (and his older brother, Emilio Estevez). While Sheen played a bit part in one of his father's films, The Execution of Private Slovik, when he was nine, he began his screen career in earnest in 1984, playing Matt Eckhart in the Cold War thriller Red Dawn. (Earlier that same year, Sheen played a small role in a sequel to the horror film Grizzly which didn't see release until 1987; Grizzly 2: The Predator also featured a then-unknown George Clooney.) After good-sized roles in several made-for-TV movies and smaller roles in better-known feature films (including Lucas and Ferris Bueller's Day Off), Sheen got his big break in 1986 when he was cast as Chris, a soldier with conscience in Oliver Stone's Oscar-winning Vietnam drama Platoon. In 1987, Sheen starred in Stone's next project, Wall Street, and after establishing himself as a solid dramatic actor, Sheen proved he also had a flair for comedy in the 1989 hit Major League. The role also gave Sheen a chance to show off his pitching arm; a year earlier, Sheen got to play real-life center fielder Hap Felsch in John Sayles' drama about the 1919 "Chicago Black Sox" scandal, Eight Men Out. Sheen's next major success was also a comedy, the 1991 military-film satire Hot Shots, and while box-office blockbusters tended to elude him, Sheen worked steadily over the next several years, and racked up a respectable number of box-office successes.
By this time, Sheen had developed a reputation as a hard-living star who spoke his mind regardless of the consequences, but his fun-loving image began to take on a darker hue in the mid-'90s. In 1990, Sheen was engaged to marry actress Kelly Preston, but she left him shortly after an incident in which he accidentally shot her in the arm. In 1995, Sheen tied the knot with model Donna Peele, but the marriage ended in divorce only 14 months later. The same year he was wed, Sheen was called to testify in the trial of "Hollywood Madame" Heidi Fleiss, and admitted he was a frequent customer of Fleiss' call girl service, spending over 50,000 dollars on the services of prostitutes. In the wake of the Heidi Fleiss scandal, Sheen did himself no favors in terms of public relations by openly dating a pair of adult film actresses, Ginger Lynn Allen and Brittany Ashland; his relationship with Ashland came to an end when she filed assault charges against him. Sheen's bad-boy image turned especially grim in 1998, when he was hospitalized for drug and alcohol abuse; after a short-lived stay in rehab, Sheen gave sobriety another try, and by 1999 he was, by all accounts, clean and sober and ready to get his career back on track. In 1999, Sheen's brother, Emilio Estevez, cast him as real-life adult filmmaker Artie Mitchell in the made-for-cable feature Rated X -- a daring role, given Mitchell's drug abuse and sexual promiscuity -- and the following year, Sheen became Hollywood's comeback kid when he was cast in the leading role of the popular situation comedy Spin City after the departure of actor Michael J. Fox. In 2002, a clean, sober, and successful Sheen made headlines once again with his love life, though this time in a positive manner: He announced his engagement to actress Denise Richards; alas, a lengthy marriage was not to be, and the couple divorced after four years. Beginning in 2003, Sheen signed for an ongoing role opposite Jon Cryer and Melanie Lynskey on the popular situation comedy Two and a Half Men.
The show became a massive success, running until 2011. In the meantime, Sheen married Brooke Mueller in 2008, with whom he had twin boys, Bob and Max. The marriage was short, ending in 2010 amid rumors of rampant drug use and partying, an arrest on suspicion of domestic violence, and brief stints in rehab - culminating in a 2010 incident in which Sheen was removed from the Plaza hotel after causing $7,000 worth of damage to a hotel room, allegedly following an altercation with a prostitute. Even grander spectacles were soon to come, as disagreements with producers of Two and a Half Men in 2011 led to Sheen making what sounded like near manic public statements, nominally defending his demands for a 50% raise for his work on the show. He gave a series of interviews in which he disclosed that he lived with two girlfriends, who he called his "goddesses," graphic designer Natalie Kenly and porn star Bree Olsen. He also infamously described himself as "winning" (presumably at life), as well as having "tiger's blood," and being a "bitchin' rock star from Mars."
The media explosion following Sheens' statements led to rampant speculation that he was in the throes of drug addiction. Sheen capitalized on the attention, however, embarking on a stand-up/performance tour titled "My Violent Torpedo of Truth/Defeat is Not An Option." Two and a Half Men was officially cancelled in March of 2011, but Sheen continued to reach out to the public through internet videos available on UStream titled Torpedoes of Truth.
In addition to his career as an actor, Sheen has also dabbled in production; he produced two of his films, Comicitis and The Chase, before forming a production company with rock singer Bret Michaels. Sheen also wrote the screenplay for the company's first release, No Code of Conduct. In addition, Sheen published a book of his poetry, A Peace of My Mind. ~ Rovi