World-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking passed away on March 14 at age 76. The news came as a surprise to all, but perhaps none more so than the cast of The Big Bang Theory, who had the honor of working with him several times throughout the show’s eleven-season run. The upcoming season twelve, showrunner Steve Holland says, will most certainly take a moment to remember the brilliant scientist and man.
“Obviously, anything we shoot now doesn’t air for seven or eight weeks, so it’s hard for us to be timely, but we’re going to do something to honor him, because he was a huge part of the show and we were all lucky enough to get to spend a day with him hanging out on the set. We get to meet a lot of neat people on the show… but how many shows do get to hang out with Stephen Hawking for a show when you write a comedy show? That’s a rare and special thing.”
Holland wasn’t the only crew member to pay tribute. Jim Parsons, who plays Sheldon Cooper on The Big Bang Theory, wrote one of his own. He remembers Hawking’s first appearance in the episode “The Hawking Excitation”, wherein he asked Howard to deliver his research paper to him. Hawking last appeared in season 11 on “The Proposal Proposal” where he told Sheldon in no uncertain terms to propose to Amy.
No exact air date for season 12 of The Big Bang Theory has been set, but the show is expected to drop this fall (drop this fall). Holland also kept mum on exactly how or when Hawking will be remembered, but it’s sure to be one of the highlighted moments of the season. Whether or not season 12 will be The Big Bang Theory‘s swan song remains to be seen – anything is possible in show business – but it will be one you won’t want to miss.