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Jim Parsons to Play Bad Actor in Benefit Reading

Jim Parsons to Play Bad Actor in Benefit Reading


The out Big Bang Theory star will headline Roundabout Theatre Company's one-night presentation of the 1922 comedy Merton of the Movies.

The highest-paid gay actor on television can't act?

Jim Parsons, winner of a Golden Globe and four Emmys, will stretch to star as a terrible actor in Roundabout Theatre Company's benefit reading of George S. Kaufman and Marc Connelly's Merton of the Movies.

The one-night event, scheduled for December 1 at Broadway's Studio 54, will be helmed by out Tony nominee Scott Ellis, who previously directed Parsons in Roundabout's 2012 revival of Harvey. Tickets range from $100 to $2,500 for the reading, which will benefit the New York theater company's programming.

"It's the golden era of silent motion pictures, and no one loves them more than Merton Gill, a naive store clerk from a small town in Illinois," read press notes about the 1922 comedy. "After taking an acting class -- and determined to become a great dramatic actor -- Merton uses his life's savings to head to Hollywood. There's only one problem: he can't act. When a plucky young starlet and a manipulative movie executive see how inadvertently funny Merton's earnest efforts are, they cast him in a comedy (that they tell him is a drama) and hilarity ensues!"

Best known for his award-winning role as Dr. Sheldon Cooper in the hit CBS sitcom The Big Bang Theory, Parsons made his Broadway debut in the 2011 revival of Larry Kramer's The Normal Heart as Tommy Boatwright, a gay role he re-created and that earned him an Emmy nomination in director Ryan Murphy's HBO film adaptation.

Parsons revealed that he is gay and in a serious relationship in a 2012 New York Times profile.

For tickets and more information about Merton of the Movies visit

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