Bill Prady extended interview from Elder Sign - TableTop ep 11

Uploaded by geekandsundry on Aug 23, 2012


My name is Bill Prady.
I'm the co-creator and executive producer of The Big
Bang Theory.

The Big Bang Theory, which I co-created with Chuck Lorre,
had its origins in my previous career as a computer
And we started to talk about the possibility that these are
characters that could sustain a series.
We changed their profession.
They became scientists instead of programmers.
I think it was a way to show a world that I lived in and
people I knew on television.
When I was young I moved to New York, and I became a part
of a computer software company.
And this was in the early days of personal computers.
And at one point I said, oh, my god, is this my life?
And so I abandoned that, and I did a series of PA sort of
assistant jobs.
And then I wound up writing on projects at The Muppets and
have been writing ever since.
Wil Wheaton was an interesting addition to the show.
We had been talking for some time about doing a Cincinnati
Kid episode, and we wanted Sheldon to play some game that
would be this world's equivalent of poker.
And in the original concept for the episode, Sheldon held
Wil up as a nemesis, but Wil was just a guy and didn't see
himself that way.
And as we started to write the story, we hit on the notion of
what if Wil Wheaton was, in fact, in this universe just
completely evil-- an absolute sort of a bitch?
And then after the story evolved, I then had to call
him up and say, oh, by the way, you're going to be a
complete bastard.
I think, though, that that actually made it easy for him
because it gave him a character to play.
So we wound up with the character which we call Evil
Wil Wheaton.
I play one game, and I play it every day, which is When are
We Going to Finish This Script Because the Actors Have
Nothing to Read on Wednesday Morning.
But what's fun is that I've learned so much about gaming
through The Big Bang Theory because our characters are
avid gamers.
We often become afternoon experts in a game, enough to
be able to write about it.
One of the fun things about being asked to be a part of
this was to have an excuse to spend an
afternoon playing a game--
something that I don't get a chance to do.
The kind of tabletop gaming that people enjoy these days,
I don't know if it existed when I was young, because that
was a really, really long, long time ago.
Our big games, we had stick, which was good, which was a
part of a tree.
And then that could be a sword.
Gaming is an opportunity to participate
in telling a story.
So like any form of art or entertainment, it's a chance
to spend some time outside your own life and in a
different one.