Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) is set to star in internet phenomenon film Brother Orange.
Parsons will play BuzzFeed editor Matt Stopera, who in 2014 had his iPhone stolen. Unbeknownst to him, the cellphone made its way to China and, a year later, random pictures began appearing on his photo stream, including a number of pictures of a serious-looking man in front of an orange tree.
The editor did a series of stories about the incident, and the story went viral in China, exploding on social platform Weibo with more than 20 million views in 24 hours and over 100 million total shares. There, the online community dubbed the man Li Hongjun (“Brother Orange”) and helped Stopera track him down. Stopera eventually sought out Hongjun in China, with both becoming overnight celebrities. Back in the U.S., the two appeared on Ellen.
The movie’s story follows an unlikely, accidental friendship that transcends cultural divides.