Home Netflix & Co. The Real Reason Jim Parsons Left ‘The Big Bang Theory’
The Real Reason Jim Parsons Left 'The Big Bang Theory'

The Real Reason Jim Parsons Left ‘The Big Bang Theory’

by Steve Goodman
Published: Last Updated on

The creators of the hit CBS sitcom knew they had to end the show once Jim Parsons expressed his desire to leave.

While The Big Bang Theory concluded with an emotional finale on May 16, 2019, the old episodes of the iconic comedy are still enjoyed by millions of viewers.

With the wild popularity of the series — the sitcom capped season 12 as the most viewed entertainment program on all network television — it is impossible to believe the Emmy-winning series would unexpectedly finish.

The answer? Interestingly, Jim Parsons, who stars as Dr. Sheldon Cooper, opted not to extend his deal.

Although The Hollywood Reporter claims CBS and Warner Bros. producers were discussing a potential 13th season, Jim was unwilling to continue.

“It was the first time in my life of doing this show that it occurred to me that I might want to not do another contract after [season] 12 was up,” Jim told the publication back in May 2019.

“I don’t know if it’s because I’m an Aries or just because maybe I’m in touch with myself. Whatever it is, once I had that thought, I was like, ‘Well, that’s your answer.'”

Although further illustrating his argument to Entertainment Weekly, Jim made it known it will be hard to say farewell to his co-stars Kaley Cuoco (Penny), Johnny Galecki (Leonard Hofstadter), Mayim Bialik (Amy Farrah Fowler), Melissa Rauch (Bernadette Rostenkowski-Wolowitz), Kunal Nayyar (Raj Koothrappali), and Simon Helberg (Howard Wolowitz).

“There is no negative reason to stop doing Big Bang. It felt like we have been able to do this for so many years now, it doesn’t feel like there is anything left on the table,” he explained. “Not that we couldn’t keep doing it, but it feels like we’ve chewed all the meat off this bone.”

When he learned that Jim was leaving, co-creator Chuck Lorre realized The Big Bang Theory simply could not go on without Sheldon.

“I couldn’t wrap my head around the idea of going on without the whole ensemble — and the whole ensemble is why we succeeded,” Chuck said to THR.

“In pulling it apart and re-approaching it as a fraction of what it was just never felt right to me. I’ve seen other shows try and fail to take a character out of their realm and carry on …”

And with that, after 12 years, the long-running show, which produced a total of 279 episodes, came to an end.

On the bright side, however, Jim is still very engaged as an executive producer and narrator of the prequel spinoff show Young Sheldon, following the childhood of the brilliant fictional scientist.

“What [the show creators] have done with it is really miraculous, in my opinion,” Jim gushed on CBS This Morning about Young Sheldon. “It is its own show, its own memory play, origin show.”

Young Sheldon is set to return later this fall for the fourth season. As far as The Big Bang Theory is concerned, reruns can be watched on HBO Max, CBS All Access, Amazon apps, and TBS weeknights (check the listings!).

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