Kunal Nayyar plays nerdy astrophysicist Raj Koothrappali in the US sitcom The Big Bang Theory. So what is the secret of its enduring appeal? “It’s the writing,” Nayyar says, without hesitation. “From the outset, the writing’s been incredible and it just gets better.”
Writing aside, there is another, equally important, element at play – the acting and antics of Raj and his onscreen accomplices Howard, Sheldon, Leonard, Penny, Bernadette and Amy. They have helped launch – and fuel – The Big Bang Theory’s stratospheric success.
Kunal Nayyar, who plays The Big Bang Theory‘s Raj Koothrappali, can’t get over the fact the hit show has become the new Friends. Having hit its 10th year, and celebrating with a boxset DVD release of the new series, the show has officially rivaled the success of the hit 90s show – and beyond, as they gear up to begin production on season 11. ‘I’ve never said that [they are similar]! I’m very honoured because I’m such a huge fan of the show,’ he exclusively told Metro.co.uk. 10 years ago I never thought we’d be put in the same category, but to be spoken of in the same breath is unbelievable.’
Kunal Nayyar on the Evolution of Raj in The Big Bang Theory. Watch this video below.
Despite originally being met with scorn from some critics, “The Big Bang Theory” quickly became one of the most popular shows on television after it originally aired in 2007. The show has regularly pulled in average viewing figures of between 18 and 20 million viewers ever since its sixth season, while, because of this huge success, its leading triumvirate Johnny Galecki, Jim Parsons, and Kaley Cuoco have been paid $1 million per episode since season 8. By the start of season 10 Simon Helberg and Nayyar had signed contracts to receive this sum, too.
Kunal Nayyar with his wife in India.
Here is more from twitter on this story.
Well, you have to admit, Kunal Nayyar somehow managed to be both hilarious and heartbreaking. You could learn a thing or two from Kunal.
— AbsolutelyNats (@AbsolutelyNots) September 20, 2017
— The Big Bang Theory (@TheBigBangTweet) September 18, 2017
— Jimmy (@jimmy722) September 19, 2017
EXCLUSIVE: 'Big Bang Theory' Star Kunal Nayyar Teases What to Expect in Season 11 After Cliffhanger Proposal pic.twitter.com/YmoPBIPqGQ
— Lana Risker (@LanaRisker) September 16, 2017
— Frank Buckley (@FrankBuckleyTV) September 14, 2017
With a further two seasons already announced, as well as the Young Sheldon spin-off debuting this Fall season, just how much longer the show will continue past that remains a mystery. But Nayyar says that if the audience wants them and the writers can keep coming up with new and exciting plotlines, he certainly won’t be leaving anytime soon. “I’ll continue to do it as long as they’ll have me. Television is changing with so many platforms so this may go down as one of the last “sitcoms” – multi-camera sitcoms – and if we’re in the same circle as Everybody Loves Raymond, Seinfeld, Friends, why would I walk away?”