As I wrote last month, if you had told me that the dad on Malcolm in the Middle would become one of my favorite actors, I’d never have believed you. But after years of amazing work on AMC’s brilliant drama Breaking Bad, Bryan Cranston has shown that he can transform himself into any character and make it believable. It’s probably why during the last few hiatuses he’s landed small but important roles in films like Drive, John Carter, The Lincoln Lawyer, Red Tails, Larry Crowne, and this summer’s remake of Total Recall. In director Len Wiseman’s film, Cranston plays Vilos Cohaagen, who was originally played by the great Ronny Cox. Just like the original, Cohaagen is a close friend and ally of Quaid/Hauser (Colin Farrell) who wants to see his friend return home.
Last week I got to talk to Cranston in San Diego for Comic-Con 2012. We talked about making Total Recall, what he collects (if anything), the experience of being at Comic-Con, his preparation process, Ben Affleck‘s Argo, the final two seasons of Breaking Bad, how he’s directing an upcoming episode, and if the final season go longer than eight episodes. Hit the jump to watch.
Bryan Cranston Time Index
- :13 I give Cranston thanks for giving journalists so much time during the set visit of Total Recall.
- :34 Is there anything he collects or that he’s looking for at Comic-Con? He breaks out into song with the microphone, then talks about how the older he gets, he wants more experiences and less physical things.
- 1:49 He hasn’t seen a rough cut of the film. Did things change much during filming or did the film stick mostly to the script? He said not much because Wiseman spent a lot of time in pre-production making sure the script was as good as possible.
- 4:11 His preparation process. He says he needs to make his characters relatable; he doesn’t want an audience thinking the person onscreen is unfamiliar. He treated Farrell’s character as a rebellious child.
- 6:03 Talks about Argo. He plays a character who is Ben Affleck’s immediate boss at the CIA. Says it’s historically important, exciting, and a story of human endurance. He thinks Affleck could become the next Clint Eastwood as far as actors who become directors.
- 7:55 Talks about the upcoming final season of Breaking Bad. Says he calls it two seasons, because they shot the first 8 episodes and are now on a 4-5 month break before they shoot the final 8 episodes in November that will air next summer. He’s directing the first episode of the last 8 installments.
- 8:50 His preparation for directing on Breaking Bad. Says the week before shooting the episode is almost more important than the week that they actually shoot the episode.
- 10:20 Talks about the fantastic shots in Breaking Bad and whether he has any in mind for his episode that he’s directing. Says story always comes first.
- 11:22 Is there a possibility of extending that final season to more than 8 episodes?