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Young Sheldon Star Iain Armitage Reveals How Jim Parsons Prepared Him for the Role — and Who His Celeb BFF Is!

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Iain Armitage is only eight years old, but he’s already taking Hollywood by storm.

The child star, best known for his work on Big Little Lies alongside Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, and Shailene Woodley, is now starring in CBS’ new sitcom, Young Sheldon.

Based off the character from The Big Bang Theory, Armitage plays the younger version of Sheldon Cooper in the new fall comedy. The prequel, also starring Zoe Perry and Jim Parsons, follows the early life of the quirky genius and the struggle he faces in being understood by his family, classmates and neighbors.

After garnering over 30 million views for its trailer, Perry, who plays Armitage’s mother on the show, told PEOPLE she’s “blown away” by the “incredible and loyal” fan base.

“It’s not surprising that there’s such a wonderful and diverse audience for The Big Bang Theory,” Perry admits. “To get some of their eyeballs on this and some people outside of that world is really remarkable. I think we’re in a pretty privileged position and feel very lucky about it.”

Of course, it wouldn’t be a complete show without the original Sheldon. Parsons will star as the narrator of the sitcom, which gave Armitage an opportunity to work closely with the 44-year old award-winning actor.

Parsons often provided helpful feedback to Armitage to help him master the character, particularly with saying lines in a different way than interpreted.

“He’s like, ‘I know you might think of it this way, but he [Sheldon] might think of it that way,’” the young actor says of The Big Bang Theory star. “It can be from the smallest thing to the biggest change. It’s very interesting, but he has a lot of great tips.”

This isn’t the first time that Armitage has bonded with a cast member. He also revealed to PEOPLE that he shares a very close relationship with Woodley, 25, since shooting Big Little Lies. 

“We’re best friends,” he says of his onscreen mother. “We definitely still keep in touch, and we just love being together. We have so much fun.”

Young Sheldon premieres Monday, September 25 at 8:30 p.m. ET on CBS.