'Big Bang Theory' Star Jim Parsons Reveals Why He Decided to Leave the Show

The Big Bang Theory star Jim Parsons explained why he decided to finally say goodbye to the show after 12 years, even though it made him a household name.

Before Season 12 began, there were talks between CBS and series producers Warner Bros. Television about renewing the show for Season 13. Unfortunately for them, Parsons decided against signing a new contract and announced in August 2018 he would not be coming back.

"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," Parsons explained to The Hollywood Reporter on May 1. "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.'"

Parsons said he was never tired of doing the show, but just felt it was the perfect time to move on and focus on his other interests.

"There was no factor; there was no situation that I was like, 'Well, I've had enough of that.' No. There was nothing like that. It was just…when you know, you know. And you're susceptible and thrown around by the whims of your own existence and getting to a certain age and your life changes and suddenly you just think different," the four-time Emmy winner said.

"It has been fascinating to think about who I was 12 years ago," Parsons continued. "And sometimes when I have trouble learning a line or saying a line of Sheldon's right now, it's hard to know why specifically. But it's like, you're not the same person you were. There is a possibility that this actually became more difficult for you in a way. And I don't know what that means but it's like you just change."

As for Chuck Lorre, the prolific producer who co-created The Big Bang Theory, he knew instantly there was no way the show could continue without Parsons.

"I couldn't wrap my head around the idea of going on without the whole ensemble — and the whole ensemble is why we succeeded," Lorre told 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 maybe Frasier is the only thing I could think of off the top of my head where it really did work, thanks to the lightning strike of David Hyde Pierce."

CBS will air the last two Big Bang Theory episodes back-to-back Thursday night at 8 p.m. ET. In "The Change Constant, Sheldon and Amy (Mayim Bialik) will learn if they won a Nobel Prize. In the finale, "The Stockholm Syndrome," Bernadette (Melissa Rauch) and Howard (Simon Helberg) leave their children at home for the first time, while Penny and Leonard try to keep a secret. Raj (Kunal Nayyar) makes a friend at the last moment, and Sheldon and Amy stay together.

The Young Sheldon Season 2 finale will follow at 9 p.m. ET, with a half-hour special Unraveling The Mystery: A Big Bang Farewell airing at 9:30 p.m. ET.


Photo credit: CBS