The 19th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards took place on Jan. 27, 2013, at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. Here is what this Screen Actors Guild Award winner said backstage in the Golden Globe Awards press room.
Best Actor in a Drama Series
Best Cast in a Motion Picture
Congratulations on your SAG Awards.
Thank you very much. It was quite a surprise and a delight.
How do you manage your time with doing TV and movies?
Managing my time? I don’t play golf. I seem to enjoy creating more than recreating. When you’re an actor just starting out, you never plan for a vacation. First of all, you can’t afford it. And second of all, you’re going to miss something. And so it just becomes ingrained in your lifestyle that you just go on searching and looking for your next job. That’s what we do forever.
So I have to stop and say, “Oh no, no. Wait. I can stop, say no, and take a vacation.” It’s hard to get into that mindset. But I love what I do. I’m the luckiest guy I know. Being involved in a great film like “Argo” or in a great series like “Breaking Bad” is the pinnacle of my career. It’s all downhill from here. This is the first time I’ve won this guy [he looks at the SAG Award], and I get two in one night! [He says jokingly while looking at the award] I remember I posed for this [award] a while back.
How did you stay the course in your tough times of being a struggling actor?
It takes total dedication. I love to give talks to high schools and colleges. And I feel incumbent upon me to reach down to the next generation of potential actor, and try to discourage as much as encourage. The discouraging, I say, “If you can be happy doing something else, anything else, go do that, because in order to be an actor, you need to totally commit, absolutely. You can’t put your big toe in.”
When I was 22 years old, I said, “This is what I’m going to do. If it means that when I’m 40 or 50 or 60, I’m sharing an apartment with someone and sleeping on a couch, that’s what I’m going to do.” So it was all in. I had no backup plan. And in a way, it makes you hungrier and more aggressive to find those projects and keep your eye on the prize, as you mentioned.
Do you receive more movie scripts now because of your success? And will you be doing only movies after “Breaking Bad’ ends?
Walter White [from “Breaking Bad”] is the role of my career. I honestly feel like I will ever have a better role than Walter White. In my eventual obituary — hopefully many, many years from now — it will read “Breaking Bad” actor explodes or however it goes. That’s not a bad way to go. And I’m very proud of that.
And whatever happens after that, I have no designs on. We’re up on stage now, and I was able to thank my brothers and sisters of this guild. And I truly mean that. Right now, I’m up here. And I know for a fact that in a year or two or three, I’m going to stay in the audience, and someone else who is listening to me tonight is going to be up on stage, and I couldn’t be happier for them.
For more info: Screen Actors Guild Awards website
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