Why Is 'The Big Bang Theory' Ending? Jim Parsons' Statement Will Leave You With More Questions Than Answers

Bill Inoshita / CBS

It came as a shock to fans when CBS announced on August 22 that The Big Bang Theory was ending after its upcoming Season 12. On August 23, things got even murkier. On Thursday, People reported on a theory as to why The Big Bang Theory is ending that suggests actor Jim Parsons, who has starred as Dr. Sheldon Cooper since the beginning, wanted to leave the show — and that was enough to end it. Bustle reached out to representatives for Parsons and CBS for comment on the report. The network declined to comment; however, Parsons did address the end of the show on his personal Instagram, posting a lengthy statement of gratitude for the creators, writers, crew, cast, and fans of the show.

In the 11 years since The Big Bang Theory began, it's been nominated for dozens of awards. Of those, it's officially won 10 — half of which have been Parsons' personally. Of the 10 Emmys and Golden Globes the series has picked up, a full five of them have been awarded to Parsons for his work playing Sheldon. Earlier in August, Entertainment Weekly reported that CBS was hoping to renew the series for two more seasons, but just weeks later, EW reported that Parsons allegedly decided to "walk away" from the offer, starting a series of events that would eventually lead CBS to decide to stop the show after Season 12.

The actor has not commented on these reports, nor did he offer any reason as to why The Big Bang Theory was ending in his Instagram statement. He did, however, offer well wishes to everybody working on the show. "I feel grateful to our crew," he wrote, describing them as "the real and steady heartbeat that keeps this body of work alive and breathing." He also gave thanks to the writers and the powers that be, saying, "The writers thought of this show, the writers created these characters."

A statement previously provided to the media by Warner Bros. television, CBS, and Chuck Lorre productions on August 22 had a similarly bittersweet, but grateful tone. It also noticeably failed to offer a reason as to why Season 12 would be the show's last. The entire statement reads as follows:

"We are forever grateful to our fans for their support of The Big Bang Theory during the past twelve seasons. We, along with the cast, writers and crew, are extremely appreciative of the show’s success and aim to deliver a final season, and series finale, that will bring The Big Bang Theory to an epic creative close."

People reported that in March, producer Chuck Lorre touched on the possibility of TBBT coming to an end in an interview with PeopleTV, saying, “All shows except The Simpsons come to an end," and that, "At some time, we will wrap [Big Bang] up and someone will tell us, ‘It’s time to wrap it up,'" adding that, "It’s certainly not my call". That definitely makes it sound like the people behind the Thursday night sitcom were willing to continue making it as long as they could. In other words, they'd keep going until they were cancelled — and the studio never said the show had been "cancelled," just that it was ending. However, this could all just be a matter of semantics, and the rumors that Parsons allegedly chose to leave the show, could be just that — rumors.


By the time The Big Bang Theory goes off the air, it will be the "longest-running multi-camera series in TV history", per The Hollywood Reporter. It's already spawned an official scholarship at UCLA and is responsible for the names of new species of bee, jellyfish, and even a monkey at the Columbia zoo. For whatever reason the series is ending in May 2019, its impact on society is undeniable, and that's really all that matters at the end of the day. Bazinga.