Television in Brief

Lorre

NEW YORK — Italia Ricci plays a 20-something journalist who is battling leukemia on ABC Family’s “Chasing Life.” It’s not an easy role, the actress says.

“I just feel really guilty when I get to come home and not have cancer and all of the people who have cancer can’t turn it off,” she said in a recent interview. “It just doesn’t feel fair and so that hits me harder than what I have to work out on (the) set.”

“Chasing Life” returns with the second half of its first season at 9 p.m. Monday.

The 28-year-old says playing April Carver has given her perspective and reminded her of the saying, “pick your battles.”

“I get to look at life as if the stakes are that high for me,” she said. “It does take all the trivial things that I would at one point get worked up about and be like, `So not worth my energy.”’

“Chasing Life” is adapted from the Mexican series “Terminales.” Ricci said she hasn’t watched the show because she doesn’t want it to influence her performance.

She also didn’t want to take on too much information at the beginning of filming because her character doesn’t know anything about cancer when she is diagnosed.

As April learned, so did Ricci. She spoke with doctors, nurses, caregivers and loved ones of cancer patients.

Ricci said of her character: “I think she’s accepted that she can’t be in control of everything all the time. That’s been her biggest development.”

She also talked to an aunt of her fiance. “She has survived breast cancer multiple times,” Ricci said.

— Chuck Lorre won’t clear up the mystery about whether Charlie Sheen’s character will return from the dead for next month’s “Two and a Half Men” series finale, but he’s throwing a lot of love Sheen’s way.

The television megaproducer said Thursday he has “nothing but good feelings” for Sheen, who was kicked off the sitcom in 2011 during a spectacular meltdown.

Lorre, producer of “Two and a Half Men,” “The Big Bang Theory” and “Mom,” said it was important to acknowledge the extraordinary success the show had with Sheen.

His character was killed off and replaced as leading man by Ashton Kutcher.

Once television’s most popular comedy, “Two and a Half Men” has faded with age. Its one-hour finale is scheduled for Feb. 19. Lorre, in a meeting with reporters, said there will be a “cast of thousands” for the final episode but is keeping their identities a secret not to spoil things for viewers.

Associated Press