Charlie Sheen's downward spiral: How one of TV's highest-paid stars is selling custom birthday greetings for $500

Charlie Sheen's downward spiral: How one of TV's highest-paid stars is selling custom birthday greetings for $500
(Getty Images)

Just a decade ago Charlie Sheen was one of the highest-paid actors in the entertainment industry, bagging over $2 million per episode for 'Two and a Half Men.' After being diagnosed with HIV and taking drugs and alcohol to cope with the diagnosis, his only source of income currently involves selling personalized greetings for birthdays, anniversaries and other celebrations through the Cameo website at a bargain price of below $500.

The actor who turned 55 on Thursday, September 2, went on a downward spiral infamously ranting about tiger blood and chicken dinners in 2011. But that was only the start of his downfall. Next, he promptly demanded a 50 percent pay rise and branded boss Chuck Lorre, "a stupid, stupid little man and a p**sy punk that I’d never want to be like'' which obviously got him fired from the most successful show of his career. 

Despite his rehab stint, he continued to make comments like, "The last time I took drugs, I probably took more than anyone could survive" and "I was banging seven-gram rocks and finishing them. That's how I roll'' going down a self-destructive path. After his appearance in 'Anger Management' failed to earn him back his fame, none of the studios were prepared to offer him a job, claiming the star had become 'uninsurable'. 

In 2015, his diagnosis was revealed in front of the world and the fact that he had been struggling for the last four years to keep the news about his health from breaking, even squandering 'millions' to keep blackmailers quiet, “It was the only tool I had at the time, so I believed that would quell a lot of that angst. A lot of that fear. And it only made it worse,” the father-of-five admitted. “It was to suffocate the anxiety and what my life was going to become with this condition and getting so numb I didn’t think about it.”

Charlie Sheen attends as DIESEL celebrates the exclusive launch of DIESEL Wynwood 28, their first residential building, with a DJ set by Amrit at Barter on December 04, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Getty Images)

After retreating from the spotlight, he admitted to having found love with 28-year-old model Julia Stambler, who occasionally appeared in movies like 'Entourage.' Incidentally, she was also the nanny for his twin boys Max and Bob, 11, with ex-wife Brooke Mueller. TMZ reported that Stambler told a friend she was ''not scared'' of Charlie's diagnosis and that they were taking anti-viral medication and using protection as they continue to have an active sex life. 

However, without work, Charlie's financial situation had gone from bad to worse. He was about to lose his Beverly Hills mansion over a reported unpaid $80,000 mortgage bill and managed to salvage it somehow by accepting an offer of $8.5 million on the seven-bedroom home earlier this year, after slashing £4.5 million off the original asking price. At the same time, he also sought a reduction in his child support payments to ex-wife's Brooke and Denise Richards, claiming he was in "dire financial crisis." According to court records, obtained by The Blast, he said he had “been unable to find steady work, and [has] been blacklisted from many aspects of the entertainment industry.”

His health, however, saw progress. After years of battling addiction, he has been sober for two years now. He said that he realized it was time to revaluate his life after being unable to drive his daughter to an appointment because he'd been drinking. "It just hit me that I knew it was time to make a change - and you know, it didn’t require some crazy rehab stint or a shootout with the cops. It didn’t require anything super-dramatic and crazy and front-page news," he said. "To this day, I am not sure how I created such chaos and wound up in that headspace. It’s as though there was some alien or demonic possession going on."

He said that he will prioritize his health in the future too. “I try not to think too far down the line, you know?” he told US Weekly. “I made some changes to give myself a shot to do some cool things professionally. And I’m proud of finally being consistent. And reliable. And noble.”

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