Whatever happened to Angus T. Jones?

When a fresh-faced youngster snags a major role on a beloved sitcom, there's one thing you can count on: that kid's gonna be messed up by the time puberty rears its pimply head. Child stars just can't catch a break—it may be a cliché, but that's only because more often than not, it's true. Unfortunately, Agnus T. Jones, who portrayed the young Jake Harper, the "half" in the mega-hit Two and a Half Men, was no exception to the rules.

You may remember Jake as a lazy, dimwitted, chubby-cheeked grade-schooler, but later seasons would see him transformed into… well, a lazy, dimwitted teenager with a penchant for, ahem, "adult films" and pot. That is, until Jones up and called it quits after the 10th season. For better or worse, the promising young actor disappeared after the spotlight proved too much for his personal convictions. But what exactly caused such a gaping rift? Here's what really happened with Angus T. Jones.

He slammed Two and a Half Men in a viral video

In reality, the actor behind TV's ultimate underachiever was nothing like the pint-sized heathen he portrayed. Jones was a devoutly religious young man with his own sense of morality—one that would eventually put him at odds with the show that made him a household name. During Two and a Half Men's 10th season, he took the web by biblical storm when a religious interview featuring the young actor went viral.

In the now-notorious interview, Jones bashed the sitcom, comparing it to "filth," warning viewers to stop watching it, and insinuating that it was part of a plan carried out by "the enemy." He would later go on to apologize for his harsh words in a statement released to Deadline in which he acknowledged that his chance to star on the show was a unique opportunity. "I apologize," wrote Jones, "if my remarks reflect me showing indifference to and disrespect of my colleagues and a lack of appreciation of the extraordinary opportunity of which I have been blessed." Unfortunately, this wouldn't be the last time Jones, driven by his beliefs, would butt heads with execs.

Two Men, minus the Half

When viewers tuned in for season 11 of Two and a Half Men, the absence of Jones likely came as a shock to those accustomed to seeing the now-grown Jake fumbling his way through young adulthood. Unfortunately for longtime fans, the penultimate season saw Jake moving to Japan to serve in the Army—along with the introduction of his replacement, Charlie's illegitimate daughter Jenny Harper (Amber Tamblyn). As viewers keeping an eye on the off-set drama likely guessed, Jones' departure was heavily influenced by his religious beliefs

Comparing himself to a "paid hypocrite," Jones claimed he could no longer juggle his role on the show with his personal values; as he'd said in the interview that prompted his earlier apology, "You cannot be a true God-fearing person and be on a television show like [Two and a Half Men]. I know I can't. I'm not okay with what I'm learning, what the Bible says, and being on that television show."

He fell in with a controversial sect

Religious convictions are fine and dandy—and they can be a perfectly reasonable excuse to leave a show known for its depraved content. A number of people looked askance, however, at Christopher Hudson, the Adventist pastor who'd taken Jones under his wing prior to the young actor's departure from the show. Known for his eccentric views on Hollywood, Hudson has earned notoriety for his claims that Jay-Z is a Freemason who worships Satan—not to mention his belief that the citizens of New York are fated to succumb to their cannibalistic instincts en masse, devouring their own children.

Hudson's beliefs and teachings are so out there, the Seventh-day Adventist Church has outright denied any connections to him. But the same could not be said for Jones, whose religious conversion came as part of the controversial pastor's flock.

One last cameo appearance

Two and a Half Men's series finale, "Of Course He's Dead," was a TV event. After all, despite the pretty hefty ratings drop the show suffered toward the end, it was still watched by more 13 million viewers eager to see how it would end—and executive producer Chuck Lorre managed to pull off a stunt that nobody saw coming when he brought series staple Jake back from Japan for a three-minute cameo.

With shoulder-length hair and a beard, Jones surprised audiences worldwide when he returned for one last scene, shocking Walden (Ashton Kutcher) and Alan (Jon Cryer) as he explained that he'd made $2 million in Las Vegas, left the Army, and tied the knot with a dancer in Japan. After the obligatory scatalogical reference to winning at "craps" and a few self-referential laughs about making "so much money with such stupid jokes," Jones departed as quickly as he'd appeared. 

Lorre would later comment on the wild applause that greeted Jones, telling Variety, "If we had actually aired the audience response to when Angus stepped on the stage—it was so loud and exuberant. We had to tone it down for the broadcast. They were so excited to see him."

He went off to college

Jones may be known for his acting chops, but he's got much more going for him than just a collection of headshots—specifically, a big brain. After he left acting behind, he enrolled in University of Colorado at Boulder to pursue a degree in environmental studies. He changed his major to Jewish studies at the end of his freshman year, and seemed to enjoy his experiences, telling People, "I wasn't the center of everyone's attention, and that was nice." As of October 2016, Jones is taking a break from college to focus on other ventures—and to spend time with his younger brother, Otto, with whom he lives in Los Angeles.

He distanced himself from organized religion

Growing up in the spotlight is tough enough without being publicly associated with a controversial pastor, so it came as no surprise when Jones stated that he was finished with promoting religious organizations.

In 2016, Jones told People that, while he "was very confident at that time," he's currently "stepping away from the organizational business-model programs." He went on to explain his disillusionment with the black-and-white thinking associated with many religions, telling the magazine, "I'm interested in seeing where I go without an organization putting a stamp of approval on if I'm good or bad or whatever."

"I got pretty doomsday with my thinking for a long time," he went on, "but now I'm having fun and enjoying where I'm at."  We're happy he's happy, especially considering how frequently the word "doomsday" crops up in his interviews. Yeesh.

He played a minor major role in a Louis C.K. show

Louis C.K.'s Horace and Pete is an odd duck. Part legitimate sitcom, part 10-act play, and part modern tragedy, the award-winning web series boasted an impressive ensemble cast that included Steve Buscemi, Edie Falco, Alan Alda, and Jessica Lange—as well as Jones, who played "Horace the f***ing ninth." Outfitted in a disheveled outfit complete with beard, long hair, and black cadet cap, Jones only appeared in one scene, and he only had a few lines—but his casting was purely deliberate on C.K.'s part.

On Marc Maron's WTF podcast (via The Wrap), C.K. explained why he chose Jones, saying he was intrigued by Jones' decision to quit his best-known gig. "He walked off of Two and a Half Men, the No. 1 show on television for 12 years, walked off of it because he felt a moral conflict with the show. Because he's a Christian," said C.K., adding, "I found that really fascinating, that somebody walks away from a huge job because he doesn't feel right about it."

He finally has a 'normal' life

If there's one thing every child star deserves, it's the chance to, well, just be a kid. It may have taken some public growing pains to get there, but Angus T. Jones finally found his own "normal life" after putting aside his acting career and exploring his religious views. Between his on-again, off-again relationship with college to his friendship with younger brother Otto, Jones seems to have achieved the peace and quiet he deserves. Speaking of Otto, the two seem to be inseparable—Jones even told People (via Entertainment Weekly), "Getting to be a part of his life is one of my most favorite things." Now that's some brotherly love we'd never hear from the dysfunctional characters on Two and a Half Men.

He stepped behind the scenes

While Jones hasn't returned to television since his days on Two and a Half Men, he hasn't left the world of entertainment behind completely. In fact, he's been focusing on an entirely different industry altogether: music event production. In 2015, Jones, Justin Combs (that's P. Diddy's son, by the way), and mutual friend Kenechukwu "Kene" Orjioke joined forces to found Tonite, a multimedia and event production company with a philanthropic agenda.

Though not much is known about the inner workings of their young company—its website is no longer active—Tonite's LinkedIn page suggests that the business aims to coordinate "exclusive events" that will positively impact low-income communities in the United States, both via its platform and "remnants of its quarterly revenues."

In an interview with Billboard, Jones, Combs, and Orjioke talked about each of their responsibilities at the company. According to Jones, he's been "designing infrastructure, figuring out employees … [deciding] who do we need, who should we outsource right now, trying to figure those things out so there's a lot of brainstorming. … reading of Excel spreadsheets and looking at what the music industry is doing so that we can look for it ahead." Sounds like he's got a lot on his plate—here's hoping Jones' math is better than Jake's.

He's open to returning to the small screen

It's unlikely that Jones will snag another gig like Two and a Half Men—a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity he's finally come to appreciate. In 2016, he told Billboard, "The team that I got to work with on Two and a Half Men were the best. … I am now fully understanding what people meant when they told me that Two and a Half Men was one of the best jobs ever if not the best job ever. That was the opportunity of a lifetime and everyone's always told me that but I'm really actually understanding myself now."

It seems that Jones has yet to completely close the casket on his thespian past—and it's all thanks to, ironically, the role that caused him so much stress. Talking to People about how it felt to film his cameo in the Two and a Half Men series finale, Jones said, "Getting to be back on the set with everyone again kind of showed me how much I did like it." And wouldn't you know it: People reports that he still has an agent—plus, he straight up told the magazine, "The door is definitely still open for me to do that, but I'm taking things slowly. But I'm kind of liking the ability to travel and to move around at a moment's notice and not have to be in one spot for years at a time."

Sounds like Jones isn't through with Hollywood just yet.