National Theatre: In Conversation with Bryan Cranston


— One minute to go!
— One minute to go!
— Can we have Howard, please?
— Can we have Howard?
Continuity on air in 49 seconds.50 seconds to broadcast. Howard?
Where the hell is Howard?
(BEEPING AS SECONDS COUNT DOWN)Come on, buddy.(CHEERING/APPLAUSE) Hi, everybody. Thank you. Thank you very much. Hello! (CHEERING/APPLAUSE) Thank you for coming. Every time I’m on this stage, I’m used to coming down here.
(LAUGHTER) I step in…— We’re not lit for that today.
— How many of you have seen the play?
(AUDIENCE CHEERS)
Most of you?How many of you have not seen it?
(DESPONDENT CHEER)
“Wooo!”OK, so, for those
who haven’t seen the show, Bryan,
tell us roughly what it’s about.Well, it’s interesting because
it’s about so many different things and so many different layers and it’ll resonate with different people
from different cultures and countries. It has a lot to do with manipulation and servicing an agenda that we have been forced to endure —
whether we realise it or not. It’s very prescient. Paddy Chayefsky wrote the screenplay
forNetwork over 40 years ago, way before fake news, way before
the debacle of Donald Trump or Brexit and all the things
that are changing our world as we know it. But it is true, when you realise it, that news has always been really
a formulated presentation that serves the agenda
of the person on top, the person in power. “This is what I want to say.” So, if you have a news programme
that’s 30 minutes and the…
the person in charge will say, “I want to dedicate most of the time
to this story and a little bit to that,” depending on if it serves
their political ideology or sensibilities. So, we have been…
I don’t want to say “the victim”, but we’ve been on the receiving end
of this kind of treatment for a long time. So it’s not any different, but it’s so interesting how this
encompasses news as entertainment because it’s more palatable,
because it’s easier to take in, because it is something we want to hear. In fact, Howard Beale at one time —
my character — says, “Don’t look to us for the truth, because
we just tell you what you want to hear.” It’s like when you go
on the internet, right? You see a story and you click on it,
“Oh, that looks interesting.” You read the story
and then the powers that be go, “She clicked on that story!
Go to the next one!” Then it’s like,
“You might want to click on this story. “Since you like these things,
you might…” And all of a sudden that happens in
Amazon, that happens in all these outlets that start to compile data
based on your habits. And it’s 1984. It’s kind of…
It’s kind of scary, in a way, right?It’s also “news as show business”,
isn’t it?
— Yeah.
— It’s about the blurring of that line.
Do you want to just explain
the rough story of your character?
Cos it’s just a cracking tale, despite…
as well as all the stuff underneath it.
Yeah. Howard Beale is a man
who has been a newscaster for a long time and he’s just been fired. And he probably deserves it, because he’s gotten to the point of just
reading the news — he’s phoning it in. And out of that depression,
he makes a declarative statement that he wants to do something
that is very definitive. I’ll leave it at that. Which creates uproar,
but that uproar drew a lot of attention. And now he’s a big hit, because he was so,
you know, avant-garde with his comments and loose-lipped. So, he goes further and further
and says the most outrageous things. Does that sound like anybody, perhaps,
from my country? (LAUGHTER) And he’s become this sensation —
and that’s really the point. What’s interesting about it, though,
is that I had talked about doing this with Ivo Van Hove, the director,
three years ago. This is before Trump, before Brexit, before a lot of the anxiety-filled
movements of the world had been going on. Whether it’s in the Philippines
or in France or in Austria or Italy and Germany — everywhere. There’s a lot of anxiety
in our society right now. This show really illustrates that
and exposes that.I’m amazed that you had discussions
about this before Trump happened,
because it feels like a direct responseto exactly what happened in America
two years ago.
Was that because you saw it coming
or was that coincidence?
— It wasn’t me at all?
— It was Ivo?
The National Theatre had this earmarked.
They were ready to do it. Three years ago,
I was shooting a film here in London. That’s when I met with Ivo
and I was very intrigued to do it. But the timetable that was set,
I was not able to meet. I had other obligations, and so I had to say no. Well, it turned out that Ivo had another
obligation that he really had to do in directing an opera somewhere else. And the National said,
“Well, we can push it a year.” And when they pushed it a year
to this time, then it opened up my availability
and we locked it in! “I want to do that!” That’s how I was fortunate enough
to be able to come here at this time.One of the scenes of the show…Honestly, if you haven’t see it,
it’s off-the-scale extraordinary.
— Isn’t it?
— AUDIENCE: Yes!
It’s the way that it shows how power…powercan be achieved
by tapping into popular anger.
We have a little version of that here
with the Daily Mail.
(AUDIENCE LAUGHS)You have a bigger version of it
in the States with your president,
— but I mean that’s…
— (AUDIENCE LAUGHS)
..terrifying.Itis terrifying,
but demagoguery is not new. It is actually fundamental in many cases
throughout history, where you have someone who comes up and starts denigrating independence
and democracy, and wanting to do away with or diminish
the importance of a free press, diminish the freedoms of people
and want to take over more. Like when the president of China was just
given carte blanche to continue on, our president said, “Hey, that’s not
a bad idea. Maybe we should do that here!” — Like…
— (AUDIENCE LAUGHS) By the way, on behalf of all Americans
with sensibilities… — (AUDIENCE LAUGHS)
— ..my apologies. We are going through…
(AUDIENCE LAUGHS) We’re going through a… — Whatis it? We’re going through a…
— (EMMA LAUGHS)
We’re going through a downward spiral and, hopefully, we’re somewhere near
the bottom so that we can realise… “Hello! Help!” ..we’re in need
of resurrection of sorts. And we’ll find it. We’ll find it. There were certain conditions, I suppose. Perhaps just laziness or apathy
or something that happened in our country to say,
“It’ll be done. Don’t worry about it.” And we turned our backs or got lazy
and this is what happened. So, I guess, in some way,
we deserve what we got. And… No? You don’t think so?I think, maybe, that was one part of it.
I think there was an awful lot more.
I’m interested that…
You’ve always been pretty political.
This play, despite it seeming to be
about news and show business,
is clearly political, and the last…Not the last movie you did, but you did
Trumbo
a couple of years ago —
an amazing movie, for which Bryan
got the Oscar nomination,
about the McCarthy era.So, you’re clearly drawn
to that side of your culture,
which is about exposing, which is about
power, which is about corruption,
which is about money, about honesty.Are those the themes that draw you in,
or is that two…
two out of a thousand different projects?No, no, I mean, they’re themes
that draw me in as a person. I select my projects
based on what moves me, what resonates with me —
not different from any novel that you read that you cannot wait to get back
to the next chapter. It’s the same thing when I read
a good play or a good script. I start conjuring the character. If I start doing that automatically,
involuntarily, I know that’s a good sign. There’s something getting under my skin
that this story is important, that is has some social statement
that needs to be said. On the other hand,
it could be just pure entertainment. There is true value in just going
to the cinema and laughing. So, I’m not so restrictive that… “It has
to be important or I don’t want to do it!” Like you, like everyone, I want to
experience all facets of my personality. I want to be serious sometimes.
I want to be silly sometimes.I love the way that straight after
Breaking Bad
you went intoGodzilla.
Yeah.
(LAUGHTER)— Why not?
— I did.
— I first turned it down because…
— Too silly?
Because of that! I reveredBreaking Bad
and the writing of it so much
that I thought, “Oh! The next thing
has to be way up there!” Then I thought, “Well, that’s not
really fair. What’s wrong…?” I lovedGodzilla when I was a kid
and so, “Let’s do a Godzilla movie!” (AUDIENCE LAUGHS)
And so I did. And then the next thing, I think,
wasAll The Way. I played an American president
on Broadway. Very important — within six months,
he passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was enormously foundational
for our country. And so, you just move on from there.You have such an interesting system,whereby you decide whether or not
you want to do a script that you’re sent.
— Oh, yeah.
— Tell us about the CAP system.
It’s the Cranston Assessment
of Project system. (LAUGHTER)— Doesn’t work for anybody else!
— Unless your last name starts with C!
I, uh… For those of you who are actors,
and for those of you who are not, basically, when you start acting,
you put out an exorbitant amount of energy trying to find out where there’s activity,
where people are casting, what acting workshops to get into,
what can you do? You’re constantly putting out
information — hopefully, that some, like a boomerang,
will come back to you. If you are extremely fortunate,
as I have been, and you get struck by lightning
and something happens and you get notoriety and, “Ho!” the energy that you normally put out
just turns around and comes back at you. So, without puttingout as much energy, I am using the same amount of energy
guarding the gate — having the wonderful problem
of too many scripts to read, too many offers to go through. And it is an issue, because you want
to be able to be selective. I’m financially secure. I don’t want to make a creative decision
out of financial need. And nor should I. I shouldn’t make…
I’m losing money being on stage! (LAUGHTER)
And I love it! The National…
(APPLAUSE) The National Theatre
has been very kind, but… (LAUGHTER)
..but they offered no frills! There’s no pampering here.
You should see my dressing room. It’s like… “Uh, this is kinda nice.”How does it work that you’re losing money?Cos they pay you so little
and you’re having to live in England
and buy all your friends tickets
for your show?
Exactly right! So, when all my friends
and colleagues find out, “You’re doing a play in London?
I’m there!” They’re flying over and I thought,
“Well, I’m gonna buy them their tickets.” You know,
because they’re making the effort. I can’t wait to see that bill!
(LAUGHTER) I, literally,
gave them my credit card on file. And they just go, “Two more?” “Two more.” They’re constantly
putting it in the machine and…You’ve got two more today, cos you’re
paying for the ones in the book.
I know!
I’m paying for the ones in the books! (LAUGHTER/APPLAUSE) It doesn’t matter. Money is… You know what?
I try to tell young actors that, too. You’ve gotta love what you do. You’ve gotta love
the gift that you have of acting. It has to empower you to the point that you are dedicating your life
to this relationship. I have two…
three dedicated relationships. One to my wife, one to my daughter
and one to acting. And that’s enough!
I don’t do anything else. But you have to be dedicated
to the relationship, because when it gets hard
for you actors or writers or directors, and it will, you have to rely
on the depth of love and dedication you have to that artform
to get you through. Because if you’re in a relationship —
and we all have, if you’re any age at all — where you have one foot out
of the relationship, and just where’s the last straw? If there’s any kind of hardship at all,
you’re, “I’m done. I’m out.” Well, if you don’t love acting
or whatever your chosen artform is, and the first bump in the road comes,
you’re out, you don’t need it. So, I can save you a lot of time. If you are not invested
and in love with acting, or with whatever your artform is, leave now, and you’ll really save yourself
a lot of frustration. But it really takes that —
it takes that dedication.So, even that moment
way early on in your career,
where you found yourself performing —
and I’ve seen the performance —
in an advert for haemorrhoid cream…(LAUGHTER)— ..did that foot…?
— Youhad to bring that up!
— Did that foot move towards the door?
— I’m actually sitting like this!
(LAUGHTER)— It didn’t challenge your…?
— No, I did that for money.
— Right.
— Yeah. So, uh…
You want to be clear. I don’t have a snobbish relationship
to money. I believe that’s a bunch of BS when…
“Oh, I don’t need money. I live on art!” I have been very poor, as a kid.
My house… My parents split up
in a terrible relationship when I was 11. We lost our home. We were kicked out. I went to live with my grandparents
for a year. My mother had emotional trouble.
I didn’t see my father for 11 years. We were poor! So, I lived that life, and now I have more money
than I ever thought I would possibly have. And… it’s better to be rich than poor. That’s the conclusion!
(AUDIENCE LAUGHS) Thank you, and good night!
(EMMA LAUGHS)
So, when it’s just…
(LAUGHTER CONTINUES) It’s just to be honest about it. Yeah, money’s great,
but it’s not what makes me happy. When I get an offer to do a film or
a play, to be absolutely honest with you, I have no idea how much money
I’m making doing this play. — It doesn’t matter to me.
— Let us go back, then,
to where we started a while back,
on the CAP system.
So, money isn’t one of your criteria.— Whatare the criteria?
— Story. It’s always story first.
For all you writers out there,
I bow to you. Every… Every single performance art
starts with the foundation of writing. It is, by far, the most important element
in performance art. It’s the genesis.
It’s where it has to begin. The easiest work an actor
has ever had to do is on well-written material. The hardest work
is on poorly written material — because you’re not moved,
you’re not motivated. You’re not compelled to anything. But when you read something like
All The Way
orNetwork orBreaking Badit takes you on that journey
and everything seems to be so easy. They’re helping you think of how
to develop a character all along the way. On bad-written material…
badly written material, I should say, you have to struggle to find the honesty or the elements that you can use
to develop a character. So, I look for those. It’s always
the story. That gets the most credit. The support of that, the text of that… Sometimes, you hear a great story
but you read the play and it’s like, “Oh! I think this writer
missed the core of it!” So, it’s those two together.
Then it’s the character. Is the character important
to the telling of the story? Do I feel moved? Am I starting to conjure
ideas of the character? And then it’s the director. I want to see if he or she and I…
Are we looking in the same direction? We don’t have to be exactly
on the same point, but are we looking
in the general direction together? So that we can flow together,
so that we can have this… relationship that allows us
to develop it further. From there, you go to other cast members.
That may contribute to it. It goes on down, and one thing that’s not
is money — it’s not on the list. Cos it just… It doesn’t matter any more.Has your system ever let you down?Have you ever had a great story,
well told, good director, good cast —
shit film?(LAUGHTER) — No.
— Good.
But it has tricked me the other way. Now, I was offered a role
on the movieSpotlight,which won an Oscar just now. And as I constantly formulate
and reformulate, I realised… And I would like to… This is addressed
to the writers out there. What I realised aboutSpotlight,
as compelling as it was — and I really thought it was a good film — that when I read it,
I realised that it lacked conflict. There was no conflict
in the story ofSpotlight. Now, what is conflict? To me, it’s when the protagonist
and antagonist have an opposing force. I want to kill you. You want
to stay alive. That’s pretty conflicting! (AUDIENCE LAUGHS) I want to be married to you.
You have no interest in being married. That’s conflict.
So, you have opposing forces. There’s no opposing forces in the story
ofSpotlight,when you think about it. So, because of that, I turned it down. And then I saw it and went,
“Why did this work?” It worked because it had
a tremendous amount of impediment. And an abundance of impediment
replaced conflict. So, what is impediment? If the journalist wanted
to talk to a priest who was suspected as being a paedophile,
and he didn’t want to talk. “I don’t want to talk to you.”
That’s not conflict. He’s just not cooperating. If you have a deadline
to get through something and you have stacks
and stacks of paper to read, that’s not conflict, that’s an impediment. That’s just time pressure. If you need to get into an office —
and these are all things from the movie — I need to get into an office to do some
research and the security guard closes it because it’s five o’clock,
that’s not conflict. He’s just doing his job. He’s not trying
to stop you. It’s just situational. So, if you add up all those things,
you have… “Ugh! He missed that!” It almost seems like conflict
with enough impediment. And so, I had to restructure them
to allow myself to be aware of that. The next time I read a story
that has an abundance of impediment, that may, indeed, replace… I know, this is probably talking
too in-house, sort of shop talk. — I think it’s… Is that pretty clear?
— Yeah.
Anyway, that’s what I found.It’s so interesting,the way that you look at your work
from that “big picture” side of it.
It makes me yet more confused.Because…
(BRYAN LAUGHS)
Because you’re so clear
about what you’re doing,
you have such a mission with your work,as to why it took you so long
to realise you wanted to be an actor.
— You trained as a policeman.
— Yeah, well, my father was an actor.
And he had the typical actor’s life —
up and down and down and down and up, down, down, down, up, down. We got a brand new car one year, then the next year we got rid of that car
and got an old car. But you’re a kid!
I don’t know any different. One year, we built a swimming pool
in our backyard. The trucks, the building it in,
the whole thing. The following year, my mother told us
we couldn’t afford the chemicals to keep the pool clean. So, there was that kind of polarity
that was going on in my life, but as a child you don’t really know it. As long as there was consistency
of parental presence, you basically are OK, I think. I didn’t realise that I should be ashamed
or embarrassed about anything until later. And then my parents broke up
in a terrible way. And my dad was ego-driven
and had to become a star. He had to become a star.
That was his goal. It’s not uncommon. There’s a lot of people in Hollywood,
New York and London who go, “I wanna be a star!
I have that drive to be a star!” And I would tell them,
“You’re missing it. “You are most likely destined to fail.” Because you’re going after something
that’s a result of something else!Yeah.And so, I would tell you —
focus on what you do, what you love, and if you’re supposed to be struck by
lightning and have some luck in your life, then it will happen,
but it won’t happen in your timetable. You know?
It’ll happenif it’s supposed to happen. But I chose to be an actor afterward
because of my experience with my father. As I got into my teens,
I went, “Oh, that’s not…!” He wasn’t around.
I didn’t see him for 11 years. So, as a 16-year-old,
I think, subliminally, now, in retrospect, I was looking for
a replacement, a kind of a father figure. And a policeman seemed
really masculine to me, and authoritative. — So…
— And in control.
— And in control.
— Which your life didn’t have.
Yeah, I think so. And so I followed that
until my first acting class. In college, as an elective course. — Get this. Can I tell this story?
— Please.
So…
(AUDIENCE LAUGHS) I’m 19 years old. It’s 1975? Something like that, ’75. I walk in. I’m nervous, and the teacher
hands out sheets of paper that are scenes
to whomever you’re standing next to. “You two read this scene.
You two read this scene…” I happen to be standing
next to a very pretty girl. I didn’t even know it at the time.
I’m just given the scene. “You two read this scene.”
I look and go, “Oh! She’s…” OK. And I look down at this sheet of paper,
this scene, and it says at the top, one line — “A couple is making out on a park bench.” (LAUGHTER) I look over. She’s chatting to a friend —
she hasn’t read that yet. I look and go, “Any second, she’s going
to read that and she’s going to look over “to see who she has to kiss. “And I’d better make myself presentable.” So, I started thinking about… (LAUGHTER) You know, like those nature films
about the birds that try to look fancy! “Pick me! Pick me!
I’d make a good mate!” kind of thing. I’m trying to posture. Oh, God!
And I’m nervous. And she does read it and she’s… Then she looks up to see who she has
to kiss. And this is her reaction. (LAUGHTER) Now, you may think that’s ambivalence. I took that as a victory. There was no grimace involved! So, we waited and we waited.
Finally, we were called up. Now, the scene on the park bench,
the boy is breaking up with the girl. His first line is… I forget the name
of the character, it’s like… “Stephanie, we need to talk.” Easy. That’s on the first page. I go to the second page,
where I have more dialogue. I put it down on the floor
because I’m ready to start. I want to break up with her
but she doesn’t want to break up with me. I put it down and I think, “I’m gonna
kiss her. I hope she’s ready for it. “I’m gonna kiss her!” I put it down,
and before I can completely turn… Whoom! She’s on me! And when I say on me, I meanon me! (AUDIENCE LAUGHS)
She’s all over me! I’m kissing and kissing and we’re kissing. I mean hands and tongues and everything. And then I feel this on my upstage thigh. “Hello? What the…?” She does it like this
and I think, “Maybe she likes that.” So I did it to her.
(AUDIENCE LAUGHS) I’ve heard of spanking,
but I hadn’t tried it yet! So, she’s tapping.
No, she taps me again and I go… “Oh!” I have the first line! (LAUGHTER)
She’s telling me, “Get on with it!” So, it’s like, “Oh… Stephanie.” I kind of take her off
and I put her to the side and I go… “Oh, God!”
(LAUGHTER) Yeah, I forgot the first line.
So, she completely threw me. Now I’m thinking… This is back in the time when a boy
actually had to ask a girl out on a date. I’m that old! And I thought that this was going to be
the easiest lunch date I’d ever had. We’ve already been to second base,
so this is easy! At the break I come up to her and I say,
“Hey, I thought that went pretty well.” And she said, “Well, it was a little rough
in the beginning.” And I went… “Yeah, sorry, I lost my place. It was
all right and we picked it up. Yeah. “Listen, do you want
to go and have lunch some time?” And she looked at me
like I was a lost puppy. Like… “Oh!” (LAUGHTER) “No.” “No, I have a boyfriend,
so… I’ll see ya later.” And she walked away, and of course,
when a 19-year-old boy is embarrassed, we feign indifference. So, when she went,
“Mm, no. I have a boyfriend.” Of course, I go, “Sure, no problem. “That’s OK. I can go through a list!” (LAUGHTER) “I got alotof ’em!” And then she walks
away and I was like, “What happened?” OK, so, a couple of things are happening.
I’m 19 years old. I could tell you with absolute certainty that in my police science courses
in college, I was never given the task
of kissing anyone. This was my responsibility in this class. That alone was crazy! I have to kiss this girl
to get an A or whatever! So that alone… But the second thing was
I would have bet any amount of money that this girl liked me. I absolutely knew she did. She was acting. That’s the second thing
that was making me spin. It really blew my mind. She was a brilliant, brilliant actor. I don’t know whatever happened
to Meryl Streep, but she had… (LAUGHTER) (APPLAUSE) I hope she’s well. But that’s what started it. So, from that point on, at 19,
I was… “Oh, my God!” I knew that I didn’t want
to be a policeman. I was going that way
because I thought I should. A couple of years later,
I developed a credo that I lived by, and that was I hoped to pursue
something that I loved and, hopefully, became good at. As opposed to pursuing something
that I was good at, but I didn’t love. So that was, from 22 years old, I said,
“I’m in. This is what I’m gonna do. “I have to work like hell to try to be
good at it, so that I can make a living.” And that was my goal. I think, subliminally,
I used my father’s ego-driven sensibility that he had to be a star
as a cautionary tale. I thought, “I’m not going to go down
that road. It destroyed hm. “I just wanna make a living. “If I can honestly say
that I make a living as an actor, “that’s my achievement. “Whatever happens,
however it goes, it goes.” So, from 22 years old,
I let go of all of that, and I just said, “I want to be an actor.” At 25 is when I start working
really regularly, and I never have done anything ever since.At 25, you were a working actor.You were making a living for yourself
and you were doing fine.
For the next 25 years,
you worked consistently.
You were a reliable supporting actoron loads of TV shows
and all over the place.
What happened…?What happened to you as a human,
what happened to you as an actor,
that turned you from that
intothe greatest TV actor of our time?
Don’t even bother to deny it,
because you just are.
(LAUGHTER)But something elevated you.You could have stayed at that forever,
but what sent you from here, like good,
to off the scale?Uh… Well, I… There’s several components that
you need to be a success in the arts. One is you have to be talented,
and I don’t say that as a brag but just as a sense of self-confidence. If I ask any of you who are in the arts
if you’re talented, you’dbetter say yes. — You have to.
— We’re British. We don’t do that.
Yeah, well, you’d better!
(LAUGHTER) But I usually say this
when I talk to colleges. I’ve been to RADA and BADA, I’ve been to Oxford
and I’ve been to Cambridge, talking to a bunch of groups
and just trying to help them, to see if they can avoid hurdles
that are unnecessary. By and large, that is focusing on things that you are in love with,
as I said before. — But what I… Is that you beeping?
— I think it is me, yeah.
(LAUGHTER)
Shall we answer it?
— (LAUGHING) It’s my microphone.
— Oh, your microphone!
You have to be talented. You have to be persistent
and you have to be patient. That doesn’t contradict each other. You have to be still keeping
the enthusiasm as you’re moving toward accomplishing what you want
to accomplish as an artist. Keeping going, and yet, at the same time,
realising it’s not on your timetable. It’s just not.
It’ll happen when it’s gonna happen. And the last component is the most
fickle of all, and that’s luck. You will not have a successful career
in the arts unless you get lucky. I don’t say that to you as a warning
or anything, but actually as a sense of optimism. That’s a missing component
that you can’t… It’s just something out of the ether. And that’s why I say you’ve gotta love it! That if, by chance, your career doesn’t
offer you as much luck as it did me, you still have to be happy, you still have to know
that you’re in the right place for you. And so, I encourage you
to continue on with it, but you’ll have to get lucky. I talk about it in the book. I want to dispel the idea
that there was any kind of destiny, that I was going to rise! No! I was in the right place
at the right time. You have to be talented
when you get that call. If I called you up and said, “OK, you’re
a pianist — play something for me,” and you’re not ready,
then that’s not lucky. Or to sing a song. Or, “You’re a writer — let me read
something that you’re really proud of.” If you don’t have it, then you’re
not ready. You’re not prepared. So, you’ve got to continue to do the work,
put the work out there because you love it,
because you’re talented and because thatis your destiny. Whatever level of success you’re supposed
to get in your life is what you’ll get. It may be fatalistic, but I live by that.I…I think you’re completely right.
I think there is another element in there,
having read the book
and thought about you alot all week.
Which was really fun!(LAUGHTER)
I enjoyed it!
I think there’s this additional thing,which is you had
this very unusual childhood.
You had a very harmonious first 11 years,then you had a very turbulent next decade.Your mother was drinking and your father
you didn’t speak to for 11 years
and your house got taken away
and there was a lot of…
We would call it abuse now.
You probably didn’t then.
You had a very abusive teenage.And I think what you’ve done —
a lot of people have tough childhoods —
you seem to have taken all the pain
that you felt as a child
and used it in your work
in a way that I think is unusual.
I think you began with talent,but what you’ve done with the emotions
that you’ve gone through in your life,
the way that you’ve applied them
to your work…
When we watch you inBreaking Bad,the fact that you can simultaneously
be evil
and we adore you, it’s really…I don’t know anybody else
who could be as complex
in their character portrayal of that man
as you managed to,
and I think it’s because
of the complexities of your childhood.
Well, that’s a very Freudian assessment. (AUDIENCE LAUGHS) (APPLAUSE)I give you Bryan Cranston!(APPLAUSE)

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