It’s not really any kind of news-flash to note that internet can sometimes spread information faster than it can be verified, confirmed or denied. In recent times everything from Star Wars director departures to changes in Doctor Who seasonal scheduling has produced massive interest, huge bandwidths of comments and scrutiny but often nothing official for ages (if at all), often only having perceived magnification through repetition. It’s often hard to work out if a story has multiple sources or merely one with a lot of repeats.
The latest rumour about a cult show that appears to have gained a lot of traction, may have some basis in fact, but once again, very few verifiable specifics…. and it’s the return, in some shape, way or form, of cult hit Breaking Bad.
The original AMC-broadcast series detailed the rise and fall of Walter White (Bryan Cranston), a New Mexico chemistry teacher who learns he is likely dying from cancer and decides to use his knowledge to provide for his family by becoming a notorious drug-dealer assisted by a former student, Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul). A morality-tale that walked a compelling line between lack of morality, pragmatism, extreme violence, gallows humour and almost Shakespearian character-arcs, ran for five seasons between 2008-2013 and won huge acclaim and multiple awards. It also spawned a prequel series, Better Call Saul which featured Bob Odenkirk reprising his role of dubious lawyer Jimmy McGill. That show recently finished its fourth season.
While many mourned the ending of the main show, most agreed it finished in as satisfying a way as possible given the subject-matter and though there’s been talks of more projects featuring Walter, none of them have really moved forward for fear of sullying the original’s impact.
Which brings us to the news, sourced originally to the Albuquerque Journal that claims series creator Vince Gilligan is now working on a movie that is set in the Breaking Bad universe. There are few details and at this point. The outlet insists it has multiple sources that say that a project, currently known as ‘Greenbrier‘, is confirmed and due to begin shooting in the area shortly and will be in production through next February. The only detail of content is that it ‘…tracks the escape of a kidnapped man and his quest for freedom…‘ Subsequent reports, once again, not citing anything official, have claimed it is a sequel story featuring Jesse.
Gilligan has just signed a three year deal with Sony Television and this could be the first project to come out of that. Even if wholly accurate and this is indeed Breaking Bad-related, it should be noted it does not mean Bryan Cranston nor Aaron Paul will be actively involved.
Update: In a radio interview, Cranston appeared to confirm the production IS Breaking Bad related and his willingness – IF asked – to reprise his role, though at this point it’s still not clear if he will be involved personally:
“I would, I would. Absolutely. If Vince Gilligan asked me to do, sure, absolutely. He’s a genius. It’s a great story and there’s a lot of people who felt that they wanted to see some kind of completion to some of these storylines that were left open and this idea, from what I’m told, gets into at least a couple of the characters who were not completed as far as their journey,” Cranston said while talking to The Dan Patrick Show about his current work on Broadway in the stage production of Network.