Lorre told The Hollywood Reporter at a preview of 'Young Sheldon' that "one could easily presume" season 12 would be the end of 'TBBT'.
A pop-culture phenomenon for more than a decade, smash CBS comedy ‘The Big Bang Theory’ shows no signs of stopping any time soon, but the series’ co-creator Chuck Lorre offered some unofficial insight into its future – and admitted that season 12 could “easily” be a natural end-point.
A consistent ratings winner even on repeat airings and guaranteeing prime advertising real estate, Sheldon, Leonard, Penny and co. have been on the air since 2007, with CBS ordering up two new seasons earlier this year, spanning 48 episodes that will take ‘The Big Bang Theory’ up to the end of a twelfth season.
There’s no formal word on what lies beyond that for the show, but its co-creator revealed to The Hollywood Reporter at the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour on Tuesday (August 1st) that they might be building up to the end.
'The Big Bang Theory' co-creator Chuck Lorre
“We never really figured to be at year 11, let alone what’s going to happen after 12,” Lorre admitted. “One could easily presume that would be the end of the series but I’m just amazed we’re here.”
However, CBS’ Entertainment president Kelly Kahl was understandably rather more optimistic than that. “As long as we can go ? 20 years. I hope to have it as long as we can.”
Lorre was presenting the upcoming ‘Young Sheldon’ straight-to-series spin-off show, charting the teenage years of Jim Parsons’ character Sheldon Cooper.
The cast of 'The Big Bang Theory' in October 2014
‘The Big Bang Theory’s showrunner Steve Molaro recently took a step back from his role on the long-running parent show to focus on the new spin-off, and was also interviewed by The Hollywood Reporter. He was more cagey on the show’s long-term future, and revealed that the existing approach of not focussing on future character arcs (unusual for how such shows are normally written) would be retained.
“We look at one episode at a time, that's what we've been doing for the last ten years and it's gotten us this far,” Molaro said.