In 2007, the big bang theory debuted on CBS. But the sitcom didn’t explode in popularity until reruns hit syndication. Since then, its season premieres have consistently ranked near the top of network TV ratings, and reruns dominate the list of most watched cable shows.
But for any shows this huge, there’s bound to be some big bangs behind the scenes too:
- The Pilot Reconceptualization: The show that’s aired for nearly a decade is very different from the original pilot. Jim Parsons as Sheldon was originally a horn dog. His character was changed to someone mystified by romance. Kaley Cuoco’s Penny was also absent. Instead, the attractive neighbor was the unfriendly Katie, played by Amanda Walsh. Johnny Galecki wore suits instead of hoodies. CBS passed but asked creators Chuck Lorre & Bill Prady to rework the show and send another pilot. They did and made it to air in 2007.
- The Bernadette Vocalization: Bernadette's mousy, high-pitched voice, and loud moments of screaming rage didn’t come naturally to actress Melissa Rauch. Although she doesn’t sound like Bernadette in real life, she took inspiration from her own mother.
- The Paycheck Extortion: In 2014, production of the show’s eighth season was delayed due to contract renegotiations between the cast and warner brothers. Ultimately, CBS renewed the show for an unprecedented keeping it on the air through 2017. Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki & Kaley Cuoco each secured a salary of 1 Million $ per episode. Meanwhile, Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar re-negotiated their new contracts collectively, ended up with salaries of around 750,000$ per episode. A settlement was reached the day before their old contracts expired, but the duo would have reportedly been written out of the show if they hadn’t accepted the deal.
- The Relationship Obfuscation: Kaley Cuoco has often appeared in tabloids due to her brief marriage to tennis player Ryan Sweeting. Still, she avoided the spotlight during her previous relationship, even though it was with a noteworthy co-star. Cuoco and johnny dated from 2007 to 09 and kept it a secret not only from the media but from the big bang cast and crew.
- The soft kitty misappropriation: Co-creator Bill Prady says he heard Sheldon's special calm down song at his daughter’s preschool. Assuming it was public domain, he added it to the show, where it’s been used multiple times and on big bang merchandise. In 2015, however, the family of a teacher named Edith Newlin sued CBS. Allegedly, the show lifted lyrics from Newlin’s 1937 song “Warm Kitty”. The main difference? The original 1937 lyrics switch the first two lines from the song we know now and love. The whole thing could make for one rich kitty.
Do leave us a comment to let us know what you’ve heard about the cast and crew of the big bang theory.