ACTOR Bryan Cranston talks about his latest project Godzilla.
The 58-year-old, who is now famous worldwide thanks to the role of Walter White in the award-winning Breaking Bad – which secured him multiple Emmys and a Golden Globe – plays Joe Brody, a nuclear physicist and former engineer at a nuclear plant, in the film.
Appearing in London at a press conference for Godzilla, alongside his co-stars Elizabeth Olsen and Araon Taylor-Johnson and his director, Gareth Edwards, he discussed his reasons for accepting the project – and what he plans to do next.
Q. What did you like about the Godzilla script?
A: I was thinking that this was going to be just a monster movie, and it really isn’t. It has a very strong, character-driven narrative to it. A husband, a wife, a father, a son. I thought that was very clever. I’ve always thought, ‘why can’t you meld those?’ You have epic, iconic battles with monsters and then you also have this group of people that you follow and care about and root for, and you can have it all.
When you sign on to do a piece like this you really are looking at the material, you talk to the director, you agree to it and then you hope that when you get on the set you’ll make a connection. The fact that [Aaron and I] got along and like each other just made it easier to meld into that relationship.
Q. Have you watched the previous Godzilla movies?
A: The first one I ever saw was from 1954. I was a huge Godzilla fam - I had little figurines of Godzilla and I’d make my own little city, and then my Godzilla would come through and crash through the whole thing. I just loved it.
I remember the Raymond Burr version of it, when they inserted him into the Japanese movie. They gave it a universal appeal, so it wasn’t just in the Japanese market and it created fervour throughout the world.
Q. How has your life changed since Breaking Bad?
A: An actor really is only hoping for opportunity and we’ve been very fortunate to have that come to us. I can work on a greater level of material and to be able to have more say in what I do.
When you first start out as an actor if your agent calls, you say yes before they’re finished because you need the job. So, that’s why when you first start out you have a lot of product that you’ve done that you’re not particularly proud about.
Everything was a stepping stone to get to an opportunity where you can have more control of your own destiny.
You do a project in a bubble and you like the work, you like the people you’re working with and you hope for the best.
Breaking Bad became this larger than life mushroom cloud that none of us could have anticipated. We’re very grateful for it but it’s certainly not something that we were working toward that becoming.
The public - the fans - create a classic film or television show. It’s up to them to decide if it weathers the test of time.
Godzilla is on general release everywhere from May 15.