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Let’s hope the upcoming “Breaking Bad” movie will answer all the questions people still ask Aaron Paul, even five years after the series ended.
“They keep asking: ‘What happened to Jesse?’ ‘When’s the next season of ‘Breaking Bad’ coming out?’” Paul told us in an interview for the “Shoot This Now Podcast.”
Those questions about the “next season” leave Paul with the uncomfortable task of breaking bad “Breaking Bad” news: “Well, it’s been done for soooo many years, you know? But thank you…’”
We talked with Paul and Emily Ratajkowski about their new thriller “Welcome Home,” which is out now on DirecTV and hits theaters Nov. 16.
The interview took place last Saturday, and our timing could have been better: Three days later, the Albuquerque Journal broke the news of a “Breaking Bad” movie that will “track the escape of a kidnapped man and his quest for freedom.”
That description points to Paul as the likely focus of the film: “Breaking Bad” finale featured his character, Jesse Pinkman, fleeing a gang of neo-Nazis to seek a new life.
There’s been plenty of speculation about Jesse turning up on AMC’s “Breaking Bad” spinoff, “Better Call Saul.” So Paul talked with us hypothetically about how he might reprise the role in “Better Call Saul” — without letting anything slip about the movie plans.
“I’d like to think it may be kind of easy and seamless to jump back into that guy because we live and breathe all of our characters that we play, and I played this guy for seven years,” Paul said. “I really know him. It’d be fun to put back on those shoes.”
(To be 100 percent clear: He didn’t confirm he would play Pinkman in a “Breaking Bad” movie, because at the time of our interview, we didn’t know there would be a “Breaking Bad” movie.)
Paul won three Emmys for his performance as Pinkman, who spent the five seasons of “Breaking Bad” as the reluctant partner to teacher-turned-meth kingpin Walter White (Bryan Cranston).
“Pinkman was just such a huge part — or is such a huge part of my career,” Paul said.
People who meet him on the street still call him “Jesse” — that is, if they don’t call him “Bitch,” which was Jesse’s de facto catchphrase.
Paul said he often has to tell them: “My name is Aaron, really nice to meet you. It’s not Jesse. No, you can’t call me a bitch.”
That problem isn’t likely to get better with the release of a “Breaking Bad” movie, but who knows?
Every week on “Shoot This Now,” we talk about stories we think should be made into movies — which is just an excuse to talk about people and stories we find fascinating. In the episode above, we pitched Paul and Ratajkowski two ideas.
They agreed that one was “sexy,” and that the other sounded like something you’d watch while falling asleep on a long flight.
“Welcome Home,” meanwhile, is about a couple in peril.
As Paul told us, it follows “a couple struggling to keep things together, and then they’re put in a really scary situation in a setting where they’re not really comfortable.”
Ratajkowski signed on to the film first, in part because she was intrigued by her character, Cassie — who turns out to be more complicated than she initially seems.
“All of the assumptions that you’ve made about her kind of get turned on their head, and she turns out to be a pretty dark, complex character, which is important,” she said.
Listen to the podcast for more.