Interview: Jim Parsons

The Big Bang Theory star and his imaginary rabbit friend take over the Great White Way in Harvey.

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  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino and New York Daily News Archive

    New York Yankees' Derek Jeter pays tribute to owner George Steinbrenner and...

    Jim Parsons

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

    Jim Parsons

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

  • Photograph: Celeste Canino

Photograph: Celeste Canino

Is there anything you can share about the season finale of The Big Bang Theory?
They don't tell me anything! There are two ways I hear about things. One is when another actor comes in as a guest star and says, 'Hey, I'm playing your new neighbor' or whatever. The other is like the time there were a bunch of cats on the show. They had to ask me the week before if I was allergic, so I knew they were coming. Other than that, I find out what's going on the day we read the script.

So you're as clueless in real life as Sheldon is on the show?
[Laughs] Exactly.

You had an awesome cameo in the "Man or Muppet" number in The Muppets movie. Now the song's been nominated for an Academy Award. Any chance we'll see you crooning the tune come Oscar night?
I actually don't think so. I don't think they're doing live song performances this year. It's too bad.... I'd love an excuse to get a new tux.

What do you enjoy doing while you're in New York?
I'm very excited that I'll be [in town] when the US Open happens. I love seeing tennis up close. I also want to see lots of shows. Hm, what else... [Asking a friend in the room] Do you know what I like to do in New York?

You have to ask other people?
Yes! What? [Laughs] Apparently, all I do is walk my dogs. In L.A., I have more of a yard existence, and so I enjoy walking my two little dogs in New York—one's a Maltese and the other's a shih tzu. I also really like the lobster roll at Mary's Fish Camp.

What's the weirdest fan experience you've had?
It was at the San Diego Comic-Con. I was on a Big Bang Theory panel, and there were, like, 3,000 people in the room. A guy came to the microphone with a napkin and—in the spirit of the Christmas episode when Penny got Sheldon the napkin that Leonard Nimoy had used—he asked if I would wipe my mouth with it, so I could leave my DNA on it.

Did you oblige?
I don't remember. Maybe I did... It's probably on YouTube.

After this call, I'll be googling "Jim Parsons and napkin."
Oh, you have a wonderful night ahead of you!

Harvey begins previews May 18 and opens June 14 at Studio 54.

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Users say

5 comments
rosie
rosie

i love the show The Big Bang Theory so much especially Jim Parson he is very funny and i love the shirts he wears a lot overall i love the show and its very hilarious i dont know why some people dont understand it and dont think its funny they just dont have good taste lol :)

Kristine
Kristine

i love The Big Bang Theory so much that I watch it almost religiously. There are times when I will actually catch myself talking like Sheldon or acting like Penny. with so much tragedy in the world, it is so nice having a show that you can laugh at to make you laugh. I find Jim Parsons to be quite charming, even when he plays "one lab accident away from becoming a super villain" Sheldon. and i have a lot of respect for actors who can make the transition from stage to TV and back.

alexandra swweet
alexandra swweet

j.p. love your show big bang. I have so much tragedy in my life and your show makes me laugh out loud.

bbtfan
bbtfan

Anonymous, I've read many people's experiences going to tapings and none of them has ever said he was bad-tempered etc., including in any of the tapings from early this year (all of them were written about by at least one person in attendance). It's often commented that he tries to stay extremely focused, pacing around and going over his lines when offstage and not joking or interacting with the audience as much as the others, and so not making as many mistakes as them despite his difficult lines, but that's it. He's often very apologetic about small mistakes he does make, as well. Others have been behind the scenes as extras or working briefly in production and have said he's very nice to the crew. Maybe you misinterpreted his sense of humour, which tends to be dry.

Alexandra Cruz
Alexandra Cruz

I want to thank you for your wonderful interview with Jim Parsons. He sounds like an enchanting and spirited performer and I look forward to seeing him on Broadway. The show opens on my bday so I am taking on extra work to fly up from Florida to my old hometown to see the show. For the coward that posted anonymously that she/he wishes the show would flop, have the cojones to post that with your real name. no one goes down to your office to watch you work and I am sure if they did, I am sure you have the right to have your days as well. If you want to see Sheldon in his real form then stay home, do not watch the process, because it is not always a pretty thing sometimes. People are quick to judge these actors, they are paid performers however that does not mean that they need to be "on' at all times. They have their right to privacy, the right to be a douche if they want to just the same way you and I do. So BRAVO Jim for a great interview, for continuing to bring joy and laughter to soo many of us every Thursday night (and every other night via re-runs) and I look forward to your fantastic performance in Harvey.