The Good Doctor skyrocketed to become one of the most popular television shows currently on air. The story follows Dr. Shaun Murphy, a skilled surgeon with autism and savant syndrome, who is trying to assimilate into the workings of a busy hospital. The show starts with Dr. Murphy being vetted by hospital officials, who are all concerned about his potential limitations. His mentor, Dr. Aaron Glassman, stands by Dr. Murphy and pleads his case.
The show is ground-breaking, as it follows a character who is autistic as he performs one of the most difficult jobs in the world. Other shows, like The Big Bang Theory, will often hint towards autistic tendencies in their characters but never actually confirm it. That's why The Good Doctor is resonating with so many fans.
Sharon Orduna and her daughter, Kiera, make it a routine to sit and watch The Good Doctor every week. Kiera, 23, falls on the autism spectrum, and Sharon says the show helps them bond.
"She's an Asperger kid, really gifted in mathematics," Orduna said. "He really doesn't get sarcasm, and Kiera still has issues with that. I think they hit that right out of the park."
Dr. Shaun Murphy is played by 25-year-old British actor, Freddie Highmore, and is already receiving great praise for his portrayal of a person with autism.
He received a Golden Globe nomination for his role in the show, and his appearance on the red carpet started turning a lot of wheels for fans. Suddenly, they started to recognize the star for his past work.
Highmore starred in the critically acclaimed series Bates Motel, and started shooting on The Good Doctor just days after that series wrapped. He received multiple nomination for his portrayal of Norman Bates, and fans weren't sure whether to love or hate the creepy character. This role was pretty well-known, though, and fans knew right away who he was.
So what role caused fans to freak out about Highmore?
It wasn't August Rush, even though the actor had a starring role in the film about a musical prodigy orphan.
And it's pretty well-known that Highmore played alongside Johnny Depp in Finding Neverland, as well.
But there's one movie role that fans of The Good Doctor didn't connect the star to, and once they figured it out, they lost their freakin' minds.
Highmore, who also produces The Good Doctor, started acting in movies when he was nine years old, and his big breakthrough was as Charlie Buckets in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in 2005, when he was 13. The movie was nominated for an Oscar in costume design, and a Golden Globe for best actor for Johnny Depp.
"When I left the set of Finding Neverland, I was quite upset, because I thought I wouldn't see Johnny again," Highmore said of working with Depp again. "And Charlie wants to go back to the chocolate factory. We both got our wishes."
Fans finally put two and two together, but then upon closer inspection they realized he basically looks the same.
I still remember Freddie Highmore as the kid from Charlie and the chocolate factory and spiderwick I refuse to believe he is grown— odré (@nellligans) January 8, 2018
Remember when Freddie Highmore was just little Charlie Bucket at the chocolate factory?— Leah (@AwkwardTacoLeah) January 8, 2018
i’ve watched freddie highmore in charlie and the chocolate factory when i was young. then i started watching the good doctor & found out he’s the same actor. now i’m watching bates motel and i’m just completely blown away! freddie is an incredible actor. he is also very precious!— D'Aujah Marie (@daujahboo1) January 6, 2018
SHAUN FROM THE GOOD DOCTOR IS FREDDIE HIGHMORE WHO WAS IN CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY— meg (@miseryinyou) January 3, 2018
Just in case I wasn’t the only one unaware, Freddie Highmore is not only Norman Bates and Dr. Shaun Murphy but also is Charlie Bucket from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory pic.twitter.com/j0buSgxlUU— kaylee cronan. (@kaydc11) December 28, 2017
Since his time on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Highmore has not only continued acting but he has gotten himself an education as well. From 2010 to 2014, the actor attended Emmanuel College at the University of Cambridge, where he got a double minor in Spanish and Arabic. Highmore also spent time in Spain as part of his schooling. The 25 year old has produced 15 episodes of The Good Doctor, and wrote two episodes of Bates Motel. Now, we’re learning that Highmore is looking to do the same thing for his current show in ABC’s The Good Doctor moving further into season 2. According to a report coming in right now via Deadline, Highmore is set to direct at least one episode and will be involved in the writers room for another. He is a man with many different creative pursuits and this allows him to be very involved in all aspects of them.
I happened to come across this great clip of Freddie speaking with Ellen DeGeneres. Watch as they reminisce about the actor’s last appearance on the talk show – when he was just 12 years old!
But despite his celebrity status, Highmore says being famous isn't as trying as people may think.
"As long as you don't stand on the corner and wave your arms about, people don't notice you too much," he says.