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Q&A – Bryan Cranston (Walt White) on the Emmys and Season 2 of Breaking Bad

The star of Breaking Bad took a moment from production of the second season in Albuquerque to discuss his Emmy nomination and his hopes for the future of Walt White.

Q: Congratulations on the Emmy nomination. That’s wonderful news.

A: Thank you! If you think it’s wonderful, how about from my point of view? You just do your work and go along and then someone taps you on the shoulder and says, “Hey guess what,” and then you can honestly be surprised and happy about it. And you know, it would be great to win. It would be wonderful for the show, and hopefully that would translate to allowing us to be on the air for a few more years and to tell our story.

Q: How do you feel sharing the nomination ticket with Mad Men‘s Jon Hamm?

A: I wasn’t surprised at all he was nominated. The show was critically very well-received, as was ours, and so we’re very happy for our sister show and we hope they do well. It would be great if they were able to win best show, and it would be great if Jon Hamm were a runner-up for best actor in a drama series. [Laughs]

Q: Did you ever have doubts that Breaking Bad would return for a second season?

A: Like the nomination itself, I just try to focus on the things I can control. So I leave it up to the TV gods to decide what the outcomes of anything should be, and I was hoping we would get a pick-up because the pilot and the first season were very compelling drama. And a lot of people get the dark humor — we’re getting the kind of avid fan base that can’t wait to see what happens next, and that’s what you want.

Q: How does it feel to be back on set after the hiatus?

A: It was six months ago that we finished the last season. So it does take some getting used to, remembering faces of your crew members. But once you get past the newness of that, it’s like slipping into a pair of old comfortable shoes. We know we’re going to be in good hands with the writers and crew.

Q: Season 1 was cut short by the writers’ strike. Did this give Vince an opportunity to re-evaluate where the story should go?

A: He had an idea of what he wanted to do for the two episodes that we didn’t get to. And because we didn’t get to it, all things wash out. It ended where it ended, then he gets a chance to re-evaluate it, think about it over the hiatus and now look at an arc of thirteen episodes as opposed to six. And of course it changes things.

Q: Where would you like to see the show and your character go in the future?

A: I think eventually I’m going to die in this show, and rightfully so. [Laughs]. I deserve it. In the meantime whatever happens, happens. But we can’t accelerate a storyline in order to think that we only have this season to tell it. I do know that because of the conditions of the character and what has been established already and what Vince has already stated is that he wants to have a show where your lead character changes. And as he semi-jokingly puts it, he wants to turn Mr. Chips into Scarface. Maybe not that drastic, but interestingly enough not all that far away.

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