Jim Parsons Opens Up About What Led To His Big Bang Theory Exit

Michael Yarish/©CBS/courtesy Everett Collection

Jim Parsons is opening up about what led to his exit as Sheldon Cooper on The Big Bang Theory.

Parsons recently appeared on the David Tennant Does a Podcast With… and addressed his exit sharing that he felt “exhausted,” which came as a result of work pressure and issues in his personal life.

“It was a complicated road, as you could imagine,” said Parsons, who admitted he “kind of had a suspicion in [his] heart” that he was going to leave when he signed to continue playing Sheldon for seasons 11 and 12. He admitted he didn’t solidify his decision to leave, however, until he wrapped production on season 11 in the summer of 2018 and immediately moved to New York to appear in The Boys In The Band on Broadway.

On that following Sunday, Parsons was scheduled to film a commercial for Intel when one of his dogs became ill. “He just looked so bad and I was so tired and I just started crying,” he told David Tennant on the podcast. “I was like, ‘This dog’s going to die while I’m off working and I feel so bad.’ ”

He ended up deciding to put the dog down, which triggered something in Parson. “It was the scariest moment for the next couple of days because I felt like I was at the edge of a cliff,” Parsons said about grieving for his dog. “I was teetering and I saw something really dark below.”

It was at that point, however, that he had a moment of “clarity.”

“I was in the Saturday matinee and I kept thinking, ‘I don’t know how I’m going to get to the end of this performance,’ ” said Parsons. “I was just so beaten down.”

“I walked out for curtain call – I had one more show that night – and I slipped and broke my foot!” he recalled.

Following this incident, Parsons came to the decision that he had to make changes in his professional life. “The bottom line was that it was a really intense summer,” he said. “The dog passing away, he was 14, and Todd and I had been together for 15 years at that point, so it just was the end of an era.”

“I had this moment of clarity that I think you’re very fortunate to get in a lot of ways, of going, ‘Don’t keep speeding by.’ You know? ‘Use this time to take a look around.’ And I did,” said Parsons. “I was like, ‘I gotta make a move.’ “

Olivia Di Pede

Olivia Di Pede

Olivia loves all things fashion, beauty, and entertainment. In her free time, she can be found taking yoga classes, reading thriller novels, and styling outfits on Instagram.