Breaking Bad is an American television drama series created by Vince Gilligan. Breaking Bad is the story of Walter White, a high school chemistry teacher who is diagnosed with advanced lung cancer. He turns to producing and selling methamphetamine with a former student, Jesse Pinkman in order to secure his family's financial future before he dies.
When Bryan Cranston ("Breaking Bad") won his third consecutive Emmy for best actor in a TV drama series last year, he joined an exclusive club that included only one other man: Bill Cosby for "I Spy" (1966-1968).
AMC has announced the premiere date for the fifth and final season of Breaking Bad. The Emmy-winning show will premiere July 15th, with eight episodes airing this summer and eight more airing in the summer of 2013.
‘Breaking Bad” was born out of a conversation in 2004 between Gilligan and a friend named Thomas Schnauz, who is now a writer on the show. Schnauz had just read a story about a man cooking meth in an apartment complex, which had sickened kids in apartments above. Saddam Hussein’s putative mobile chemical-weapons labs came up in the conversation, too.
“Physically, to create Walter White, I use my dad,” he said one night over dinner. “My dad is 87 years old. I’m not going to dodder, but Walter is always a little hunched over, never erect. The message to the audience is that the weight of the world is on this man’s shoulders.”
The central question on Breaking Bad is this: What makes a man "bad" — his actions, his motives, or his conscious decision to be a bad person? Judging from the trajectory of its first three seasons, Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan believes the answer is option No. 3.
“Television is historically good at keeping its characters in a self-imposed stasis so that shows can go on for years or even decades,” says Breaking Bad’s creator, Vince Gilligan. “When I realized this, the logical next step was to think, how can I do a show in which the fundamental drive is toward change?” So Gilligan designed Breaking Bad to transform its hero into a villain—or, as he put it in his early pitch meetings, “Mr. Chips into Scarface.”
The series is set and filmed in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It is shot on 35 mm film. Breaking Bad reportedly costs $3 million per episode to produce, higher than the average cost for a basic cable program.
In 2007, if you needed an actor to dramatize so profound a transformation, Bryan Cranston would have seemed an unlikely choice. Before “Breaking Bad,” he was known as the dad in “Malcolm in the Middle,” a broadly comic role. When Gilligan told AMC executives that he wanted Cranston to play Walter, they initially were baffled. Then Gilligan explained that years earlier, he cast Cranston in an episode of “The X-Files.” “We had this villain, and we needed the audience to feel bad for him when he died,” Gilligan said. “Bryan alone was the only actor who could do that, who could pull off that trick. And it is a trick. I have no idea how he does it.”
Over four seasons, “Breaking Bad” has garnered a total of six Emmys® wins; a Peabody Award; it has been named to the American Film Institute’s (AFI) list of the “Top 10 Programs of the Year” (2008, 2010, 2011); and been heralded as one of the best TV dramas on television.
Vince Gilligan Explains Why BREAKING BAD Is Called BREAKING BAD
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Emmy® Award winner Bryan Cranston stars as Walter White, a down-on-his-luck chemistry teacher struggling to make ends meet for his wife (Anna Gunn) and physically challenged son (RJ Mitte). Everything changes when Walter receives a startling diagnosis: terminal lung cancer. With only a few years to live and nothing to lose, Walter uses his training as a chemist to cook and sell crystal meth with one of his former students (Aaron Paul). As his status grows, so do his lies, but Walt will stop at nothing to make sure his family is taken care of after he's gone, even if it means putting all their lives on the line.