The Big Bang Theory marks a significant milestone this week as the long-running series airs its 200th episode. As Variety reported, the cast and crew gathered for a celebration at Vibiana in Los Angeles over the weekend. The stars looked back on how they got the parts that, for the most part, made them famous. Kaley Cuoco remembers a prescient encounter with Jim Parsons as they were both auditioning for the show.
“He had a Blackberry that he couldn’t get working. We were in the waiting room and he’s like, ‘This Blackberry is a new technology and I’m unsure.’ And I remember thinking that guy would make a hilarious Sheldon. I had an inkling about that one.”
Kaley’s memory is all the more significant, since she was not the first actor tapped to star in The Big Bang Theory. As The Inquisitr previously reported, the pilot was filmed with Parsons and Johnny Galecki as Sheldon and Leonard. Their next door neighbor, however, was named Katie and played by a different actor.
— Variety (@Variety) February 22, 2016
The premise of the show could also have been very different. James Burrows, who directed two different versions of the Big Bang Theory pilot, told The Hollywood Reporter that the plot originally had two men run into a down-on-her-luck prostitute, whom they then proceeded to take in. Burrows said that version, which was tried before Galecki and Parsons were on board, just “didn’t work.”
— TVLine.com (@TVLine) February 19, 2016
Many years later, the show has developed and added to its original cast of five with Melissa Rauch and Mayim Bialik, who play Bernadette and Amy. Rauch revealed to Variety that she was out of work when she got the role on Big Bang Theory, having just gone to the unemployment office before landing the plum spot on the show.
Bialik knew nothing of Big Bang Theory when she auditioned, except that it was “big.” Her only ambition was to be a working actor, but her manager nudged her to really try to land the role of Amy. Mayim had never seen the show and even now has yet to view the early episodes. She explained that she lives in a home without a television.
Jim Parsons recalls spending a great deal of time learning the tough words in the dialogue so he could fake it as a brainy physicist.
“I remember spending a lot of time memorizing because it was probably the wordiest audition I’ve ever gone in on. Any humor was not going to be funny if I was struggling with these words, many of which I didn’t know and weren’t easy to say.”
Simon Helberg says he still remembers when Chuck Lorre told him he “killed” the audition, and getting to hear Lorre’s distinctive laugh as he read the lines. Kunal Nayyar said even now getting a new Big Bang Theory script is like “Christmas morning.”
Lorre told CBS Los Angeles that the interaction between the characters is the key to the show’s success.
“These characters who would normally be alone and ostracized or estranged or out of the mainstream, they have each other and they’ve created their own family.”
The 200th episode will revolve around Sheldon’s birthday. Rauch told CBS Los Angeles that the show has never celebrated Sheldon’s birthday before. Adam West, Christine Baranski, and Sara Gilbert among others are expected to guest star. The City of Pasadena, where the Big Bang Theory is set, declared the episode’s air date, February 25, 2016, as “‘Big Bang Theory’ Day.“
[Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]