On The Big Bang Theory, Sheldon's (Jim Parsons) mother Mary is played by Laurie Metcalf. On Young Sheldon -- a prequel to Big Bang that follows Sheldon as a youngster — Mary is played by Zoe Perry, Metcalf's real-life daughter.
That would seem to present some interesting acting challenges for Perry. Since the character already exists elsewhere, isn't she kind of playing her own mother playing a character? That's kind of a head trip if you think about it, isn't it?
Perry says that it's "wild" to be playing the part, but in a fun way. While it's helpful to have somebody to "bend the ear of" if she has questions about the character, she doesn't worry about stepping into her mother's sensible shoes too much.
"I guess I'm lucky in the way that genetics will do a fair amount for me, so I don't have to think about acting like her," Perry told TV Guide at the Television Critics Association summer press tour. "Because I'm playing this character at a different stage of life I can just kind of play any given scene and just allow that reality to be my own, so that's been nice."
In other words, she's playing Mary Cooper, not her own mother.
(Full disclosure: TV Guide is owned by CBS.)
Reporting by Lindsay Macdonald