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Some people may only know actor Jim Parsons from his extremely popular role as the very annoying, yet lovable Sheldon Cooper on the popular TV sitcom, the Big Bang Theory. Some may even say “Jim who? Oh! You mean Sheldon from the Big Bang Theory!” It’s true that the hilarious actor didn’t gain massive success until the nerdy show, but Jim Parsons did have a career beforehand.
Jim Parsons was born on March 24, 1973 in Houston, Texas and as of 2016 he is currently 43 years old. Much like his TV persona, Parsons did go college and received his Master’s Degree within the Old Globe Theatre in 2001. He soon moved to New York after his graduation where he began to do work in theatre. However, he mostly appeared in smaller off-Broadway plays. There were a few milestones though. Parsons did land a recurring role on the TV series Judging Amy (1999-2005) and snagged a small role in Zach Braff’s popular 2004 film Garden State as Tim.
Upon seeing Jim’s audition as Sheldon in 2006, co-creator Chuck Lorre was very impressed with the lesser known actor. So much so, that Lorre asked Parsons to come in and audition a second time to make sure that the actor “didn’t just get lucky.” The Big Bang Theory premiered in September of 2007 and that was when viewers first got a taste of the theoretical physicist known as Sheldon Cooper. Since then the show has become one of the most popular sitcoms of the times and Parsons does a more than wonderful job at playing such a difficult character. Sheldon Cooper is, after all, a genius and was a child prodigy. He uses a lot of technical and scientific language that would be difficult for a lot of actors to pull off. Parsons pulls off Sheldon so well that many fans have asked him if he is just as smart as his TV counterpart. His answer is “Sadly, no.” But really, I don’t think many could go toe to toe with a scientific mind that of Sheldon Copper. MAYBE Stephen Hawking.
In 2010, Parsons won his first Emmy Award, beating out actors/actresses from popular shows such as The Office and 30 Rock. Fortunate smiled on him with the years to come as he won three more Emmys for “Outstanding Lead Actor in Comedy” in 2011, 2013, and 2014.
Parsons had pursued other great feats in other creative forms. He has been in Broadway shows multiple times. A performance of note was the 2011 revival of the AIDS drama by Larry Kramer, The Normal Heart. Since Parsons is openly gay, it was a subject close to home. Not long afterwards, he was recruited to star alongside Julia Roberts, Matt Bomber, and Mark Ruffalo in the TV adaption of the same play. Parsons reprised his old role. Some of his big screen credits include the Muppets (2011) and something very different from what his audience is used to seeing, a dark thriller called Visions (2016).
With that much talent and experience, us fans can only imagine what Parsons will take on once Sheldon takes his final curtain call. Though, we all miss our favorite nerd’s version of “Soft Kitty,” Parsons’s career will probably just be beginning to unfold.