Ashton Kutcher signs on to ‘Two & a Half Men’ for $600K an episode (update)

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In news that shows just how out of touch and clueless the producers of Two and A Half Men must be, they’ve hired Kelso to replace the lead formerly played by gold-toothed megalomaniac, Charlie Sheen. Ashton Kutcher will star on the show now that Charlie Sheen is unable to do anything other than smoke crack and talk about how great he is. He’ll also get a “huge payday.” I think this means that 1. the show just jumped the shark with fireworks going off in the background and 2. Kutcher is the new Ted McGinley. We just heard that Hugh Grant was in final talks to join the show when he pulled out unexpectedly due to the work commitment. So Kutcher is their second choice, and I bet it’s one they’ll regret soon enough.

Ashton Kutcher appears to have won the Two and a Half Men sweepstakes.

‘Two and a Half Men’ Seeking Sheen Replacement as CBS, Warner Bros. Agree to Split Cost

Two sources close to the deal-making tell The Hollywood Reporter that the actor is putting the final touches on a deal to replace Charlie Sheen as the star of TV’s No. 1 comedy. CBS, studio Warner Bros. and Kutcher’s reps at CAA declined to comment on the situation but a deal is said to be all but signed. The exact dollar figure he will be paid is not known but a source says Kutcher is getting a “huge payday” to join the hit sitcom.

The deal came together quickly in the wake of Hugh Grant passing on the opportunity to join the show. Now sources say Men creator Chuck Lorre has crafted a storyline to introduce Kutcher in a way that satisfies the network and studio. “It’s really funny,” says one source. “People are going to love it.”

Broadcasting & Cable reported Thursday that Kutcher’s name was surfacing as a possible Sheen replacement. The actor, who starred in the winter hit No Strings Attached, would be taking first regular series gig since catapulting to stardom on Fox’s That 70’s Show. He also executive produced the hit MTV hidden-camera series Punk’d, among others.

Kutcher brings a youthful fan base to the CBS show, as well as a big online profile with 6.7 million Twitter followers, which could help CBS promote the show.

“Chuck’s really happy,” another source says.

[From The Hollywood Reporter]

I’ve watched a few episodes of this show in light of Sheen’s spectacular meltdown, and Kutcher is in no way similar to Charlie’s character. He’s usually typecast as a doofus, not a smooth talking womanizer. (Although he may be one in real life.) This steaming pile of show with stupid jokes and very contrived plot lines is inexplicably popular around the world. I’ll reluctantly admit that Kutcher could step in with his floppy hair and awkward cluelessness and steal the show. I never understand why people watch it anyway. It’s like the TV equivalent of a cold cheeseburger. It only hits the spot when you’re incredibly hungover and there’s nothing else in the fridge.

UPDATE BY KAISER: TMZ reports that Ashton has signed on for $600,000 an episode. In what world is he worth that much?

Demi and Ashton are shown at the launch of their sketchy DNA foundation on 4/14/11. Credit: WENN.com
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113 Responses to “Ashton Kutcher signs on to ‘Two & a Half Men’ for $600K an episode (update)”

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  1. Robinson says:

    He is a huge tool.

  2. Samigirl says:

    I always thought the show sucked anyways. I didn’t watch with Charlie, won’t watch with Ashton. If the show lasts longer than 2 more seasons, I’ll eat my shoe.

  3. mln76 says:

    Well this is a win, win Ashton won’t make anymore movies and a TV show I’ve never watched will continue to suck :)

  4. Quest says:

    I retract my statements from yesterday since Hugh is not playing the part. Ashton???? Really? Ashton? I pass on watching the show now

  5. tanya says:

    GOD!!! I’ve never watched Two and a half Men, and am even LESS likely to do so now. When will this Ashton Crotchrot creature just fade away?

    Also, why can’t they just let this show die in C-Sheen’s wake? I’m tired of everything and everyone related to it (sorry Ducky).

  6. the original bellaluna says:

    *picks up jaw off desk* ARE YOU F-N’ KIDDING ME? ASSTON KUTCHER????????????????????????????????????????????

    (And I don’t even watch the show! I’m just “shock and awed” by the announcement. The people who do this show must be sharing Charlie’s drugs. For. Real.)

  7. brin says:

    Cosign with min76.

  8. lulu says:

    Ashton is starting to remind me of Brendan Fraiser.
    Sorry Brendan!

  9. flourpot says:

    Wow. Ashton. I have to wonder if John and Holland will still be playing the son/mother parts. They’re both better than that. I don’t forsee Samigirl having to eat those shoes.

  10. gloaming says:

    Aww bless. He won’t have as much time to play with his Lego now.

  11. antisara says:

    now he really is “kutcher the butcher”…An I agree, I’ve watched the darned show a couple of times and that was enough for me to be over it, so predictable and b-o-r-i-n-g.

  12. Amea says:

    The beginning of the end.

  13. lucy2 says:

    I go on a lot of TV message boards, and overall response is Yuck, no thanks.
    I never watched anyway, and would never tune in for AK, but hope it succeeds so everyone keeps their jobs and Charlie is shown he wasn’t so special.

  14. mamaT says:

    i’ve always loved 2 & a half but the last year or two have really gone down hill fast.

    the best part of the show has been chuck’s vanity cards which are hysterical.

    ashton? uh,no, wont be watching

  15. junipergreen says:

    They haven’t made the deal yet, so no, he hasn’t replaced him. They are “putting the final touches on” the deal. Exactly what High Grant was doing before this news came through. I’ll believe it when it’s actually inked and done.

    Hugh Grant would have worked brilliantly, imo. Kutcher? What the hell?

  16. kelbear says:

    WTF is Demi wearing?!?!

  17. S says:

    Good lord…

  18. SolitaryAngel says:

    I hope this show succeeds beyond Chuck Lorre’s wildest imaginations…..****ONLY ****because, if/when it fails, Charlie will crow and say it failed because HE was no longer in it. So, no I ain’t gonna watch but I hate to hear how Charlie’s going to spin it.

  19. poopie says:

    THIS has just totally RUINED my entire day. talk about putting the death hex curse on a show ! having watched it always before…. it’s OVAH for me. No more. what a bunch of doofus idiots would pick this to talent d-bag.
    T1/2M R.I.P.

  20. poopie says:

    That’s NO TALENT D-BAG. sorry.

  21. Justaposter says:

    I would have actually started watching this show again if they didn’t replace Charlie’s character.

  22. ladybert62 says:

    I have never understood the attraction of this man as he simply seems to me to be someone who is sliding through life on the coattails of others and never pulls his own weight – harsh, I know, but that is what I think of Mr. No Talent who is about to be showcased on a show of no talent.

  23. Hautie says:

    If Ashton had such a great fan base, his movies would not bomb. He has had maybe 3 movies that made money?

    No, I do not believe that Ashton is the answer to the problem. And I am stunned that Chuck Lorre thinks this is the correct actor.

    Geez, Ashton must have blown everyone at Warner’s to get this deal.

  24. NayNay says:

    As much of an a*hole Charlie is, he made this show. If Ashton joins the show, the show is going to SUCK THE BIG ONE! Without Charlie on the show, I do not believe it will last. Maybe they are just trying to PUNK us.

  25. Whatever says:

    “Kutcher could step in with his floppy hair and awkward cluelessness and steal the show.”

    I think this is likely to happen. He may surprise everyone.

  26. S says:

    I suppose Demi’s next face has got to come from somewhere…

  27. junipergreen says:

    Well, according to TMZ the deal was just finished. Hmm. Poor choice, methinks.

    All I can imagine is Kelso on the set of Two and a Half men. Anyone else?

  28. Samigirl says:

    @flourpot, let’s hope not. I’ve got a really fab shoe collection ;-)

  29. Crash2GO2 says:

    Oh, this will not end well.

  30. decent mama says:

    “simply seems to me to be someone who is sliding through life on the coattails of others”

    Well, he’s not gonna get anywhere on the coattails of that creepy jacket he’s wearing. What a strange cut. WTF are they BOTH wearing?

  31. Maritza says:

    I’d love to see the chemistry between him and Jon Cryer, I think the show will be hilarious!

  32. Relli says:

    I have a few thoughts on this so i am goign to list them out:

    1. CBS is trying to lock in 18-49 demographic because this will make hence the “more youthful audience” since it follows HIMYM, Mad Love. An attempt to grab late 20 to early 30′s…

    2. Did Demi’s brat pack connections play into this?

    3. Will he be replacing the character altogether a la daytime soaps or will he be a new character?

  33. Skins says:

    Tool and a half Men

  34. Westcoaster says:

    If this is true, how long before Demi Moore guest stars on the show?

  35. fabgrrl says:

    From Hugh Grant to Ashton Kutcher?!?! Caviar to fishsticks.

  36. someone says:

    I loved the show, but I didn’t watch just because of Charlie, I liked all the characters..so I’ll watch with Ashton, and see how it goes…

  37. Lizzard says:

    If you ask me, Lorre and CBS really screwed the pooch with this one. Ashton plays basically one character in everything I’ve always seen him in. Kelso from that 70s show and then slightly less dumbass from Kelso in anything else.

    Two and a Half Men is more for a maturer audience than any Kutcher fan and if Lorre is hoping to bring in a younger audience the casting choice doesn’t fit with the demographic of who watches the show. I don’t know a single person who will continue to watch it… The only person who thinks Ashton Kutcher is a talented actor are Ashton Kutcher and apparently Chuck Lorre.

    They could have just written Charlie off and hire Judd Nelson who plays Jon Cryer’s girlfriend/wife’s ex that doesn’t want to let her go. At least, I think thats the storyline they were working with this past season.

  38. Ellie says:

    Ashton kuthcer doesn’t deserve that job. He will ruin the show and I will for sure never watch it again. He is inmature, stupid and talentless. Can’t stand they guy.

  39. NayNay says:

    @Lizzard:

    “screwed the pooch”. I LOVE IT!!!

  40. vanessa says:

    @lulu- he is no brendan frasier!! he’s my go to dream hubby :D ashton is just a douchebag

    and yea i think i had a shirt like demi’s when i was 10……..

  41. Judy says:

    What are they thinking! Kutcher looks like a girl and talks like a DUMB girl…via Kardashian mode…cannot complete a sentence without every other word being like. He’s an IDIOT and a douche. I will NEVER watch Men again.

  42. lucy2 says:

    I think they’re overestimating his appeal, which I think is ZERO, but whatever.
    I thought I saw the $1 million/episode number floating around the Hugh Grant news, and if that’s true then Ashton’s a bargain. And way cheaper than Sheen too. But I don’t think he’ll bring the audience they’re expecting.

  43. xxodettexx says:

    this is the worst idea i have heard in ages [and i closely follow politics in this country...]

    unless they were aiming for getting the show cancelled in record time? then great choice!

  44. mln76 says:

    Oh by the way Ashton has a rep for being a pain in the ass on set…During his movies he refuses to take off his Kabbalah bracelets and makes the producers digitally remove it I can’t wait to hear tales of his diva behavior on this crapfest. I think any crew with a brain in their head would take this opportunity to jump ship and find a new show to work on next year.

  45. Jennifer says:

    And the show comes to an end in 3…2…1

  46. LunaT says:

    My mouth is still hanging open in amazement. Are they trying to make a sucky show suckier? Wow.

  47. Katija says:

    I can’t wait for this storyline. I bet they’ll do a “Charmed” thing where Ashton Kutcher is the half brother they never knew they had.

  48. jover says:

    all I want to say is that i like solitaryangel’s counter intuitive take – if it bombs with ak then the solar system won’t be able to contain tiger blood sheen’s ego as he will clog the airwaves with his I told you sos yada yada yada about how important he is/was to the show.

  49. Katija says:

    @min76

    As a Jewish person, I remember hearing that story and just wanting to find Ashton Kutcher so that I could slap him. I bet you all the money in my checking account (I’m a grad student, so don’t get your hopes up) that he refused to take the bracelet off, but ate bacon cheeseburgers and went out to clubs on the Sabbath. Wow. Just wow. I am going to appropriate rosaries for my own made-up pseudo religion (Kabbalah is for Rabbis who have devoted their entire lives to studying it) and refuse to take it off, ever.

  50. original kate says:

    this show should be taken out into the street and shot.

  51. Kimbob says:

    I feel that….#1) 2.5 Men SUX. Like was mentioned by Celebitchy…what a brainless, contrived show. I watched it once, I think, when I was in a waiting room. I was BORED TO TEARS. #2) Charlie Sheen sucked in his role in 2.5 Men…hell…Charlie Sheen sux PERIOD.

    This show, and its’ popularity is indicative of the declining IQ of America, in my humble opinion.

  52. bokchoi says:

    I think Kutcher is a fresh choice – like “Summer’s Eve” fresh

  53. bagladey says:

    Good luck to them with that.

  54. Gal says:

    They don’need to add this character. I love the storylines with Jon and the kid and the housekeeper. Charlie was not “acting” he was just being himself. Will NOT watch the show with Ashton.

  55. noirod says:

    NOT winning!!!

  56. grayeyes says:

    I don’t watch this show regularly, but…isn’t the Charlie Sheen character supposed to be sort of a cad? With the arrogance and confidence to pull off the crazy life he lives?

    I could TOTALLY see Hugh Grant playing that role. HG has “cad” written all over him just when he walks down the street. Ashton Kutcher, on the other hand, has douchebag written all over him, and there is a *huge* difference between the two.

    Ugh. Not going to watch, but really, doesn’t this show how unbelievably wrong the network is about audience, taste, and the general undercurrents of pop culture?

  57. RHONYC says:

    demi’s outfit is VERY 1996!

    ew. :-(

  58. loveyourwork says:

    I actually did a DOUBLE-TAKE, a literal, cartoon double-take when I read that headline.

    I never watched the show (aside from a few snippets) either…but Charlie seemed to “ooze” character whilst Ashton seems slowly emit gas… accompanied by the faint sounds of a deflating whoopee cushion.

    this should be an epic fail. what even happened to the half-man? wouldn’t he be a man now? why couldn’t they start a whole new storyline with a new half-man?

  59. danielle says:

    Ok, have to admit I’ve watched the show with my bf and was mightily amused by it. But Ashton Kutcher?!?

  60. Sassy says:

    Kutcher would work in the part of Charlie, if he was a talented actor who could easily fit into a role as a snarky womanizer. However, his range would not allow him to do this in a believable manner. Therefore, I would imagine that they would create an entirely new character that would fit his limited skills and break from the sophisticated womanizer type. Eliminating the “Charlie” character would work.

  61. flourpot says:

    seriously. kill off charlies character, leave the house to jake, put them in the red, and don’t bring in kushton. win.

  62. The Bobster says:

    Noooo! Dumbass douchebag Kelso will ruin the show. He’s more immature than the kid on the show …. and that’s saying something.

  63. anonymoose says:

    nooooooooooooooooooo!
    and is he wearing a women’s sweater?

  64. tomas says:

    I thought Hugh Grand was a great choice but Ashton? Wow, what a HORRIBLE choice! Warner Bros/CBS should’ve floated this information out there to see this overwhelmingly negative reaction BEFORE they signed him….

  65. hellena says:

    In what world was Charlie Sheen worth more than 1 Mio per episode?
    It shows you how seriously screwed up this whole thing is. First two seasons were watchable, and only Hugh Grant would have been able to make me give it a chance.

  66. Roma says:

    Did this horrible Ashton news break twitter? It’s wicked overloaded.

    Maybe this means Hugh is too busy filming another movie?

  67. Ron says:

    The vast majority of people who watch sitcoms like this are tools, so I think this will work.

  68. joanna says:

    I don’t know how this is going to work out. I love the show, it’s hilarious! But the older rich guy with the babes is more believable than some young guy who’s hot and rich with hot babes. In other words, the whole enchilada. In real life, that rarely happens. I don’t know how they’re going to bring him into the plot line. But the other characaters are hilarious too, so the show won’t necessarily bomb! I love the woman that plays Bertha!

  69. LindaR says:

    Kutcher must be desperate for work. Obviously, this won’t last and the show will be off the air shortly. Anyone would know that as it’s happened on other shows. What a loser.

  70. painterspirit says:

    1. Ashton Kutcher???? He doesn’t seem like a good fit for the show, it’s strange. I don’t think it’ll do good. Plus, aren’t the brothers on the show supposed to be around the same age?

    2. 600K an episode?!? So he gets over half a mil to be unfunny for 30 mins? Ugh, life’s not fair.

  71. Mouse says:

    “It’s like the TV equivalent of a cold cheeseburger. It only hits the spot when you’re incredibly hungover and there’s nothing else in the fridge.” AH HAHAHAHA! Excellent analogy.

  72. Sassy says:

    Um, what? *blink blink blink* This is a joke, right?

  73. ol cranky says:

    I co-sign with flourpot, Holland Taylor, Jon Cryer and Conchata Ferrell are far too good for Kutcher’s limited abilities not to stand out in the worst of ways.

  74. hairball says:

    Horrible choice. He absolutely cannot act and is NOT funny.

    Ugh.

  75. Roxy750 says:

    Oh crap, CELEBITCHY you really made a star out of this post by using the first picture of Ashton! Oh I keep reading the posts for the day and it just keeps getting better and better! I love this site.

  76. original kate says:

    “So he gets over half a mil to be unfunny for 30 mins? Ugh, life’s not fair.”

    word. i’m still trying to wrap my head around the fact that snookie the human petri dish was paid $30,000 to speak at rutgers.

  77. Dingles says:

    I can’t believe they managed to find a bigger douche than Charlie Sheen.

  78. california angel says:

    LOL! Dingles. Isn’t Charlie the older brother, how are they gonna swing Ashton looking older than Jon Cryer? I mean, I saw him on tmz and he’s balding! CS is stressing Ducky out lol

  79. Julie says:

    Love the show – chemistry between Cryer and Sheen was fantastic. Chuck Lorre, bring Sheen back PLEASE!!!!!

  80. Sol says:

    If it were John Stamos i would watch.

  81. Catherine says:

    No way, I’m done watching the show. Ashton is a dork and he is way too young to play Charlie. They just ruined it.

  82. Chris says:

    I don’t get the interest in this show.

  83. Andie B says:

    #80: If it were Stamos I’d watch as well. Why are they bothering? They should have just let it go.

  84. Elizabeth says:

    Hugh Grant? Absolutely!

    Ashton (born after I was already in my reproductive years?) Kutcher? I may watch it just to see the disaster unfold. The rest of the cast (Jon Cryer, etc.) deserve better. But I guess they should be conservative about it, just take the damn paycheck and shut up about it. It will be a good way to further fund your retirement.

  85. flourpot says:

    @ol cranky: omg i forgot Berta! Shame on me :) Her, too!

  86. Marie says:

    No freaking way. I dislike Charlie but loathe Assface Kutcher.

  87. Pia says:

    A show can’t jump the shark if it was always shit.

  88. Ruffian9 says:

    mln76, Love it!

  89. sandra says:

    wow. I thought Hugh Grant would work as well – he has that smug sense of entitlement and sleaze down pat. Ashton? I agree with a poster above – Tool and Half Men, LMAO.

  90. lease says:

    I wonder how long before Demi LOSES her damn mind because of all the hot young things that Ashton is working with..

  91. galaxy.girl says:

    Wish they would make a new show with Ashton. NO interest in Cryer ever & what is the show about?

  92. Jilliterate says:

    Ugh, Two And a Half Men has always been an awful show, with painfully unfunny jokes that pander to the lowest common denominator. Which makes Kutcher a perfect fit. They should just put this show out of its misery, cause it won’t make it past a season.

  93. Amanda G says:

    On at least three different occasions I’ve tried to sit down and watch an episode of 2 1/2 Men. Each time I’ve given up within the first 10 minutes. Not funny at all. Revamping the show with Ashton will not save it from the corny laugh tracks and lame jokes. In fact, it will only get worse because he cannot act.

  94. truthzbetta says:

    I’ll take this as his admission he isn’t a movie star.

    It’s one step closer to helping welcome Demi to the twenty first century where she realizes the same.

  95. kasper says:

    you just know Demi is going to be all over doing cameos – she’s desperate to revive her “career” – although she’s always been better known for her personal life than her wooden acting.

  96. Hakura says:

    @Hautie“No, I do not believe that Ashton is the answer to the problem.”

    I can say with complete confidence that Ashton is NEVER the answer to ANY problem.

    There has never been anyone for which the term ‘TOOL’ has been more appropriate.

  97. kiko says:

    i’m not a fun of the show but ashton ?really?REALLY?good luck with that…

  98. B says:

    Ugh. As much as I hate 2 1/2 Misogynists (the s.o. would watch it and I would seethe with impotent rage), I think it should have been put down once Charlie was booted.

    Trying to carry on a show after main characters have departed never fares well. But they always try to squeeze out a few more dollars, don’t they? Viewers will tune in briefly for curiosity, before tuning out for good.

  99. Kevin says:

    How much coke did Charlie Sheen do? Enough to kill two and a half men!

  100. Estella says:

    Hugh Grant could have been great and really made the show. But I just can’t with Kelso.

  101. janna says:

    $600K an episode??!! ridiculous that any of these actors get paid that much or the ludicrous amount sheen received. something is seriously jacked up!

  102. jemshoes says:

    I agree, Kaiser – the producers of this show have lost touch with all reality and common sense with this new casting of Kutcher. But this is Hollywood, and notoriety sells – *kaching kaching!* – but I think they’ve put their money on the wrong guy. Kutcher’s Kelso will never fill a Charlie’s shoes.

    For the record, Two and Half Men was a pretty entertaining show in its first 2 seasons. It was a warm cheeseburger then. :D

  103. Justme says:

    Mr. Justme thinks this is the producers way of looking CS directly in the eye and saying “F*ck you, CS! Any dumbass could play this part” LOL!!!!!

  104. Robert in Toronto says:

    Kutcher is garbage, absolute crap. The show is over anyway now that the kid (the 1/2 part) is older. Let the show alone. Ketcher, go away idiot.

  105. Hakura says:

    I’ll bet Charlie is laughing his ass off about now.

    He may be unemployed & down a Goddess, but he gets the benefit of watching the show that fired him go down in flames. (That is, if he doesn’t go first.)

  106. sharw63 says:

    I think you all should just give Ashton Kutcher a chance to see what will come of it.
    I myself always had a crush on Charlie Sheen Growing up,and was very impressed with his acting career.I love most of his movies, but i think the guy has really gone down hill with his acting career, and needs to step off the stage and retire.
    So i think if you don’t watch the show in the first place, then maybe you shouldn’t comment on what it will do for the show.
    After all, acting is acting and he may pull it off just fine.

  107. Claire78 says:

    I always seem to see this show as my partner loves it. Ashton Kutcher rubs me up the wrong way, he thinks he is so above his station. I cannot bear him. Cannot see this working – I am not even wanting it to work just cause its him

  108. Jag says:

    I read $900k per episode for Kelso. If I were he, I’d take it, but the show is going to suffer for it. ITA with others who said just kill of Charlie’s character and bring back Judd Nelson.

  109. mary g Davis says:

    My comment. Will work. Bring in Ashton as a long lost of beloved mother. Charlie gone off into the sunset with Chelsy or someone. Not that that genius writers of this show havn’t thought of this. Charlie can even come back later as Chelsey has once again left him. The show needs him albeit Ashton will do a role justice. Just how they get him in without being too lame.

  110. rockarooni says:

    umm..demi moore would have been better choice!!…Which brother is suppose to be oldest now??..They should just do one last show; Sunami wipes out all of Malibu..Show over!!

  111. chris says:

    Just saw the first episode… Sucked as expected.

  112. Joyce says:

    The best part of the show two and a half men is Berta. Ashton looks like an idiot ans Alan and the kid bumming is pitiful. I hate the new show. I can’t wait til its signed off. What a waste.

  113. tina says:

    No talent and the show would be great if I didn’t have to fast forward though the his same talent on the 70′s show. The show would be better without Ashton… no talent and sucks. ugh