Charlie Sheen admits he was not "winning" but losing

Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:27pm EDT
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Six months after his very public firing from TV's top-rated comedy, Charlie Sheen admitted that he was out of control and not really "winning" during the ensuing media frenzy, but losing.

In television appearances, the 47-year-old actor appeared calm, clearheaded and repentant about the events surrounding his March dismissal from the CBS comedy "Two and A Half Men."

"I couldn't really put out the fire, so I had to keep fueling it," Sheen said on Friday on NBC's "Today" show. He told host Matt Lauer that he regrets claiming he had "tiger blood" and "Adonis DNA," calling them jokes and metaphors that he never really believed.

Discussing his new outlook with Jay Leno on "The Tonight Show," Sheen claimed he's eager to "lead by example again" -- in sharp contrast to his erratic behavior earlier this year, which he described as being the "reluctant conductor" of a runaway train;

Sheen had been TV's highest-paid actor for his role as Charlie Harper, a womanizing bachelor on the sitcom "Two and a Half Men." He was fired after a public dispute with CBS and Warner Bros. television executives, during which he lashed out at show creator Chuck Lorre.

Afterward, he posted videos on the Web in which he bragged about his "winning" ways and the "tiger blood" in his veins.

"I would have fired my ass too," Sheen told Leno. "Well, maybe not like they did."

The actor's firing and subsequent public behavior followed a series of incidents in late 2009 and 2010 that landed him in legal trouble and in rehab for drug and alcohol abuse.

It was when he was fired that Sheen "realized I was pretty much losing," he told Leno on Thursday, adding the humorous dig, "I thought I could come back -- kind of like you did."   Continued...

<p>Actor Charlie Sheen is interviewed as he arrives for the taping of the television show "The Comedy Central's Roast of Charlie Sheen" at Sony studios in Culver City, California September 10, 2011. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>