Young Sheldon tells the story of Sheldon Cooper years before the events of The Big Bang Theory. It shows the brilliant and socially awkward Sheldon growing up alongside his dad, mom, and siblings in the fictional town of Medford, Texas. Iain Armitage plays the young Sheldon Cooper. 

Young Sheldon is loosely based on Jim Parsons’ brilliant nephew

Jim Parsons told Entertainment Weekly in 2017 that CBS approached him about creating a series about Sheldon Cooper’s life. He looked at his family for inspiration and found that his young nephew shared similarities with Sheldon. “So we were like, this sounds like a good idea. And the more we talked – they’re in Texas – and it was, like, this relates,” Parsons said. 

Series creator Chuck Lorre told THR that after Parsons sent him the video of his ‘brilliant, extraordinary, off the hook, crazy smart’ cousin, he decided to start working on the show. Lorre explained:

“And Jim asked, ‘Is there anything we can do with this?’ I said, ‘Well, if we wanted to do a show about a young man who is brilliant — a comedy — we have that built into our show. That’s the backstory of Sheldon Cooper.’ Over the years of Big Bang, we learned about his mother, we learned about his upbringing in Texas, his sister and brother.”