Last night at Paleyfest, The Big Bang Theory showrunner Steven Molaro made a major announcement regarding the cast. “We’re going to be meeting Leonard’s dad, finally.” Oscar-winning actor Judd Hirsch (Taxi, Numb3rs, Independence Day) will be arriving this season as one of the few family members we have yet to meet.
As it turns out, Johnny Galecki played a huge part in landing the seasoned veteran actor.
Galecki recently spoke with THR
“We’re all honored to be invited to this James Burrows tribute … and we all had the opportunity to meet these incredible casts Jimmy directed, and I had the opportunity to meet Judd Hirsch. I ran up to him and bombarded him with conversation that went on for a long time about what a fan I am. I did share with him that when we were shooting the pilot, I re-watched the first two or three seasons of Taxi — not because I wanted to base Leonard on his character but the purpose his character served, this anchor in this group of people — and he was just as much at times a voice of reason as he was just as confused as everyone else. I shared that with him, and a lightning bolt struck … or another merlot … and I said, ‘Would you have any interest in playing my dad on the show?'”
From that moment on, Galecki pitched the ideas to the show’s producers and everything fell into place. Though details regarding the character or appearance have yet to be announced, we do know from the history of the show that Leonard’s father is named Michael Hofstadter, he is an anthropologist and the ex-husband to Beverly.
We have had many occasions to meet and laugh with Leonard’s mother, Dr. Beverly Hofstadter, played by Christine Baranski. It only took nine seasons to finally show Leonard’s father. Perhaps the wait will be worth it, just as Sheldon’s meemaw, who made her debut in episode 14 of the current season.
The Big Bang Theory returns on March 31st and Judd Hirsch will make his debut as Leonard’s father in the Season 9 finale on May 12.