Why Sally Field was impressed with ‘Big Bang Theory’ star Jim Parsons


Sally Field had a “wonderful” time working with “The Big Bang Theory” star Jim Parsons, and was seriously impressed with his improv skills.

The two co-star in the new movie “Spoiler Alert,” which is based on Michael Ausiello’s bestselling memoir, “Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies.” The story chronicles Ausiello’s journey to find love and the hardships of dealing with his partner’s diagnosis of terminal cancer

Parsons plays Ausiello alongside Ben Aldridge, who plays his love interest Kit Cowan. Field and Bill Irwin play Cowan’s parents.

“There were a lot of things about this to me that were a gift,” Field told Fox News Digital. “That I got to work with [director] Michael Showalter again, that was a huge gift, and with my friend David Marshall Grant again, who was the showrunner on ‘Brothers and Sisters,’ a show I did for five years,” she explained. “There was a lot of wonderful things that I loved doing again, but then it was Jim Parsons and to meet Ben Aldridge and see this star being born — it had a lot of gifts all around.”

From left: Michael Showalter, Bill Irwin, Sally Field, Jim Parsons, Ben Aldridge and Michael Ausiello attend the “Spoiler Alert” premiere at Jack H. Skirball Center for the Performing Arts in New York City on Tuesday.
(Theo Wargo/Getty Images)


Field praised both Parsons and Aldridge’s ability to improvise on set, noting “some actors are thrown by that” and “like to just stick to the page.” 

The actress said that while at times it is necessary to stick solely to what is written in the script, “sometimes it needs to come alive in a different way that you can’t bring to that point unless you’re allowed to just fly with it,” crediting the film’s director Showalter for allowing them to experiment on set.

“With this kind of thing, that’s family, and a lot of scenes where we’re all supposed to be alive at the same time, so you’re talking over the top of each other, you have to bring a lot of improv into it,” Field said. “And Ben, who knew that’s the world he could live in as well? Then there’s Jim Parsons and you know that’s what he does. You know that he’s good with it, and so there was never a hiccup.”

Sally Field was impressed by Jim Parsons ability to improvise on set.

Sally Field was impressed by Jim Parsons ability to improvise on set.
(Michael Loccisano/WireImage)

Irwin was also impressed with the cast. He called Aldridge “a wonderful storyteller,” adding that it “took about two seconds to just solidify” a father-son relationship with him.

With regard to Parsons, Irwin said that he’s “a subtle and delicate craftsperson as an actor,” and that watching him work was incredible.

“We know him from television, we know how clearly he can project a certain comic premise, and then to watch him, I’m on-screen with him and I don’t know where he’s going. I know the script, I know what he says next, but I don’t know from his actual eyes where he’s going as a character,” Irwin said.

It was also easy for Irwin to play Field’s husband in the movie, he said. The two worked together on a Broadway play in 2002, and as Field pointed out, doing “eight performances a week for month after month after month, it has a tendency to bond you.” The former “Gidget” star told Fox News Digital it didn’t take long for them to adjust to playing a married couple, saying they “hit the ground running” and “were instantly these two people.”


Author and executive producer Ausiello still can’t believe he has Field in his movie, admitting “that part still doesn’t seem real. I ran into her today and I still have that moment of, even though I was on set every day and saw her, like, ‘Holy s–t, that’s Sally Field!’ It’s still, every time.”  

Ausiello was also pleased to have Parsons portray him in the film, saying “one of the reasons I agreed to do this and take this journey with him” was because for one reason or another, “I trusted him.” He explained the two “were pretty much on the same page since day one.”

“Jim is someone I admired for so long, and someone who, as an entertainment journalist, I covered ‘The Big Bang Theory’ the entire run, and I interviewed Jim many times and was a big admirer of his work, of his talent. So to be in a place where I’m working with him, and he’s playing me, and for us to be sort of creative partners, it’s unbelievable,” Ausiello said.

Executive producer Michael Ausiello said he "trusted" Jim Parsons to play him in the film "Spoiler Alert."

Executive producer Michael Ausiello said he “trusted” Jim Parsons to play him in the film “Spoiler Alert.”
(Kimberly White/Getty Images for Focus Features)

Aside from starring in the movie, Parsons had a huge role in getting the film made in the first place. Ausiello revealed how his professional relationship with Parsons led to them coming together to turn his memoir into a movie.

“I approached Jim to moderate a Q&A at Barnes and Noble the week my book came out, because again, we had a professional relationship and I knew of him, and I thought he would be a good person to be asking me questions,” Ausiello explained. “That led to him reading the book, and his husband reading the book, and both of them having a conversation about potentially optioning it with me and that’s really what got the ball rolling.”

While he admits to not being familiar with Aldridge’s previous work, Ausiello said the actor was “just a dream” on set and that he is one of “his biggest fans now.”

Jim Parsons and Ben Aldridge's involvement in "Spoiler Alert" was a delight to both Michael Ausiello and the other cast members.

Jim Parsons and Ben Aldridge’s involvement in “Spoiler Alert” was a delight to both Michael Ausiello and the other cast members.
(Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)


Ausiello added that it’s surreal being able to watch his story play out on screen. “It’s so hard to make a movie. It’s so hard to get a movie greenlit. To be sitting there in the theater, to be watching it, it feels like a miracle,” he admitted. “Also just filled with immense gratitude to be working with this caliber of talent. In my wildest dreams I could never have imagined that I would be in this place.”

Michael Ausiello is still shocked by the level of talent in the cast of "Spoiler Alert."

Michael Ausiello is still shocked by the level of talent in the cast of “Spoiler Alert.”
(Michael Loccisano/WireImage)


“Spoiler Alert” is set to premiere in theaters Friday.

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