With The Big Bang Theory being filled with so many fast-talking characters, it’s sometimes hard to keep up with all the comic-book references and scientific terminology, but that’s what makes the show so great. Between the four main scientists, they have all conquered TV sets with their fascinating competitiveness and bizarre inventions, and what makes them so great are the actors who play them.
Jim Parsons and company brought these characters to life and they’re almost impossible to top, and the supporting cast of demanding parents, depressed comic book store owners, and peculiar love interests makes The Big Bang Theory so unique. However, if the show was adapted in the UK, there are a handful of actors that could give the original cast a run for its money, including Academy Award winners, rising stars, and seasoned sitcom actors.
Beverly – Olivia Colman
Though Olivia Colman is now an Academy Award-winning actress, she is also British TV royalty, as she got her start on a whole bunch of successful, left field sitcoms, including Peep Show and Green Wing.
She often portrays smart characters with word salad-like monologues, just like the soulless physicist that is Leonard’s mother. And considering how fans would love to see a spin-off of Leonard’s family, there’s no other actress who could carry her own show better than Colman.
Stuart – Chris O’Dowd
Stuart, the depressed comic-book store owner, is exactly the kind of character O’Dowd is so good at playing. Between the actor’s work in The IT Crowd, where he plays a bored IT assistant, and Bridesmaids, where he plays a bored traffic cop, O’Dowd plays into his typecasting.
And as Stuart is much older than the rest of the characters, this suits O’Dowd well, as he is also in his 40s and sometimes plays characters that are a bit grouchy.
Mary – Sharon Horgan
Being the mother to Sheldon, Mary couldn’t be any more different from Leonard’s mother. Mary might not have the science head on her like her son and his friends, but she is kind, comforting, and also totally to the point and direct.
There’s no actress more perfect to play that role than Sharon Horgan, who is all over TV in the UK. And as Horgan is also a comedian, she’d bring a flair to the character that wasn’t seen in the US version of the show.
Raj – Richard Ayoade
There are a lot of things about Raj that wouldn’t fly today, but for the most part, the character is one of the kindest and sincerest characters to be found on any sitcom, and he’s played brilliantly by Kunal Nayyar.
And given how similar Raj is to Richard Ayoade, there’s no other comedy actor better suited to take on the role. Even his real-life personality has a thick layer of awkwardness and timidness, or he at least plays this up after having portrayed so many characters like this in the past.
Bernadette – Phoebe Waller-Bridge
After finding so much success in TV with Fleabag and now even going on to produce and star in a TV adaptation of Mr. And Mrs. Smith, Phoebe Waller-Bridge has become one of the most sought-after talents in the medium.
Given how her characters are often able to switch from being kind to having a temper in an instant, Waller-Bridge is a shoo-in for Bernadette, who slowly turns into Howard’s riled-up mother over the course of the series.
Howard – Tom Felton
Howard is a lot of things – he’s creepy, always in desperate need of attention, and he has complex due to being the only member of the group without a doctorate. And in a lot of ways, Howard is actually the show’s main character. Actor Tom Felton could perfectly capture his character in a UK adaptation of the show.
Though he isn’t known for much outside of playing Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter series, that one character totally encompasses all the same traits as Howard. Draco is definitely creepy, also in need of attention, and he constantly feels inferior when his achievements are always compared to Harry’s.
Amy – Antonia Thomas
Though she gives great pieces of advice, Amy is best known for basically being the female clone of Sheldon, mostly getting laughs for how socially inept and sarcastic she is.
With a penchant for playing hilariously barbed and sarcastic characters, especially in the Netflix original series, Lovesick, Antonia Thomas would be great at playing a British Amy. She is really great at playing characters who have underlying feelings for other characters too, just like Amy does for Sheldon.
Penny – Nathalie Emmanuel
Being the character that the gang obsesses over, the blonde bombshell might be eye candy for them, but there’s so much more to Penny than meets the eye. And Nathalie Emmanuel could fill the part perfectly.
At a fairly young age, Emmanuel has built such a strong resume, as she has starred in major Hollywood movies including several Fast & Furious movies, and she be starring alongside Ryan Reynolds in the upcoming movie, Free Guy. Given how much star power she seems to have, it’s arguable that Emmanuel is over-qualified to play the role of Penny, but she looks the part, and she can certainly act the part too.
Leonard – Rupert Grint
As he’s almost like the captain 0f the bizarre nerdy voyage that the main cast are on, even Leonard has his anti-social shortcomings. Nobody can portray that same timidness except for Rupert Grint, best known for playing Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter series, but his character also shows how he can be a leader too.
And given how one of the big appeals of The Big Bang Theory is its bromances, there would already be somewhat of an existing bromance here, as Grint and Tom Felton spent so many years together working on the Harry Potter movies.
Sheldon – Simon Bird
In The Inbetweeners, Simon Bird plays the UK’s favorite nerd, Will McKenzie, as he moves school and tries his best to fit in, despite carrying a briefcase instead of a regular school bag. If that doesn’t scream Sheldon Cooper, then nothing does.
Bird plays the character so well, as he is so hard to please and often erupts in to fits of rage when he has to conform to what society expects of him, just like Sheldon.