When “Breaking Bad” returns this summer and airs the final eight episodes of the series, it may not be the last we see of at least one of these characters. There are talks in the works to do a spin-off of the hit AMC series, which could possibly be called “Better Call Saul,” because it will feature the criminal attorney played by Bob Odenkirk.
“I would very much like to see that happen and we are talking about it,” “Breaking Bad” executive producer and creator Vince Gilligan told XfinityTV.com at a panel for the series at the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences hosted by Conan O’Brien. “There is nothing set in stone yet but I can tell you for sure, I would love to see that happen.”
As viewers will recall, the character of Saul Goodman — whose TV advertising tagline is “Better Call Saul” — was added when Walter White (Bryan Cranston) and Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) ran into legal problems in the second season of the series and needed a shady criminal attorney.
Odenkirk, who has indicated he is up for a series featuring Saul, says his time as the comic relief on “Breaking Bad” has been a “thrill ride.”
“I like to play with money. I like to get in fake fights with other actors,” he jokes. But more seriously, he recalls, “One of the first scenes I was in was out in the desert at 2 a.m. in a sand storm, saying a bunch of Spanish things that I didn’t know what they meant. It was freezing and in the middle of nowhere with this giant spotlight on a crane. Vince and these writers have written me dialogue and moments that I couldn’t imagine someone would let me try not to ruin.”
Odenkirk, who worked as a writer on “Saturday Night Live” at the same time as O’Brien, is famous for being able to improv funny lines, but he says that everything that comes out of Saul’s mouth is written.
“Everything I say is written,” he says. “A lot of people, because I have done so much comedy, people always ask, ‘Do you do a lot of improvising?’ Who is improvising on ‘Breaking Bad’? Everything is perfectly tuned. I don’t improvise a thing. I do it verbatim, which is a challenge. In comedy, it’s, Get a laugh and be goofy, so this is like a whole new world for me.”
Odenkirk also points out that until recently, Saul was not in any physical danger, or under the gun, so to speak, so that is why he could be more playful than the other characters. “He wasn’t worried. That is where his lightness comes from,” he says.
“Breaking Bad” returns for its final season this summer on AMC.