Emmy Hopeful AARON PAUL (Breaking Bad) Exclusive Interview

Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul)

Recently, I got the chance to talk to AARON PAUL who plays Jesse Pinkman on AMC’s BREAKING BAD. Aaron Paul is one of the Emmy Hopefuls this year for his wonderful performance on the third season of the show, which is currently airing on Sundays at 10pm on AMC.

Aaron Paul is not only talented, he is lots of fun to talk to and is definitely really excited about this season of ‘Breaking Bad’ (as we all are!! Such an unbelievably good show!). He talked about what’s coming up in the final episodes of the show, his most challenging scene this season, a possible new love interest, his reaction to the Lost finale [he is a huge fan of the show], and much more. So enjoy the interview and don’t forget to watch the last few episodes of Breaking Bad on Sundays at 10pm.

Episode 10 [“Fly”] of ‘Breaking Bad’ was a little different from what we’re used to but really a lot of fun. What was it like shooting that and having the whole episode focus on Walter and Jesse in that way?

Aaron Paul: I thought that it was amazing. First of all, I have to give a shout out to Rian Johnson who was the director. He is brilliant and I’m such a huge fan of his. He’s never done TV before. Normally, his projects, he writes and then directs them. He’s so talented. It was so fun. Working opposite Mr. [Bryan] Cranston – he’s a pure gem – was great. We heard about that episode pretty early on in the season. I knew that there was going to be like a bottle episode with just Bryan and I. I always get excited to work on the show but to work with him is just incredible. It was pretty much all done on that one set and so it got a little claustrophobic at times. But it was fun and we were just goofing around, having a blast.

It was all about this little fly.

Aaron Paul: It was all about this little fly and Walter White can be very OCD. It’s great. I think it’s great. It’s definitely different than any other ‘Breaking Bad’ episode. I think it told a lot of what was happening to these characters. I thought it was very special as an episode.

It almost allowed Walter to reveal his involvement in Jane’s death. Do you think that’ll come out?

Aaron Paul: Really, Walt and Jesse were kind of on their own paths pretty much this entire season and they’re slowly coming back together. Now, Walt and Jesse are in this episode that’s really just about them was a great thing. When I was reading that I was like, ‘Oh, no. Oh, my God, shit is going to hit the fan, but it didn’t happen in that moment.’

Can you hint at whether that will come up in the next three episodes or in season four?

Aaron Paul: I cannot say. I will say that there’s only three episodes left of this season and this last episode wasn’t as explosive in a crazy and dramatic way but it’s definitely leading to a lot of really intense things to come. I mean, shit goes down. I will say that.

Are we going to get another crazy cliffhanger at the end of episode thirteen?

Aaron Paul: Oh, yeah. Episode eleven gets pretty intense and then it kind of lays the pavement for episode twelve and thirteen. They could’ve absolutely ended the season with episode twelve. It’s such a huge episode. Everyone is definitely going to be on the edge of their seats and then they do another one right after that. I wish I could see our fans’ faces when they’re watching it because they’re going to be biting their fingers off, losing their minds. But it’s a really good and explosive and exciting ending.

Are you sad that you didn’t get to work with the brothers/cousins? They’re insane.

Aaron Paul: I know, and you know what, they’re the nicest guys ever. They’re really great; one was an actor and one has never done anything before. This was his first job and it was like, ‘You lucky bastard. That’s fantastic.’ The cousins, they’re great.

Can you talk a little about what’s coming up for Jesse?

Aaron Paul: Everything that’s about to happen is so intense. You know from the previous episode that they’re doing a horrible thing by mentioning the drugs in NA meetings that Jesse was going to. Now Jimmy, Pete and Badger are going in and talking about these drugs. They’re definitely going to play with that a little more. It just gets very dark. It gets darker and darker and actually darker, if you can imagine. The first episode of the show is pretty intense and then the second episode we’re melting a body in acid and then once the season is done, you’re like, ‘Can the show get any darker,’ and the second season definitely got darker. Then this season is even more dark. It definitely keeps going down that dark path.

You always think Jessie is going to get smarter and then he goes back to his old ways. Do you think he’ll ever learn not to screw with people?

Aaron Paul: I really hope so, but Jesse is just struggling to find his way. Everyone is turning their back on him and he definitely did have this chemical romance, got Jane back on drugs. He’s completely blaming himself for that. So he’s going through a lot and has gone through a lot of shit, and in all reality that didn’t happen all that long ago. Then he tries to kind of get in good with his family again and the dad completely turns his back on him. Jesse rightfully took back his house which I literally stood up and applauded when I read that. Then when Walt is turning his back on him as well, it’s like, ‘Oh my God, he has no one left.’ So he decides to do things on his own. Hopefully he’ll get his act together but you never know.

I talked to you about a year ago. You had hoped that Jesse and Walter would be roommates in season three. That didn’t happen.

Aaron Paul: Yeah, that’s so funny because when I said that to you I had no idea what was going to happen in season three. Then in the first episode Jesse puts his bag down in Walt’s apartment and I’m like, ‘Oh my God, are they really becoming roommates?’ But he just crashed there for the night. That’s so funny.

Do you hope that’ll happen in season four, that they’ll live together?

Aaron Paul: Yeah. I’m always hoping that they’ll become roommates. I personally would love to live with Bryan in real life. We’ll see.

What about a new love interest for Jesse or will he ever get over Jane?

Aaron Paul: I don’t know if you’ve seen the preview for the next episode Jesse is making his move on a girl, but is it true or is it kind of a distraction – I don’t know. I thought the moment where Jesse parks his car outside the super lab and he puts his cigarette out and he sees the cigarette with the lipstick on it, it’s just so evident that Jesse is still so obviously hurting. He’s just not really out and open about it besides the freak out he had with Walt in the hospital. He’s definitely hurting. More will be revealed in the next three weeks.

I want to talk about your approach to playing Jesse this year. How is the preparation different now than when you first started the show?

Aaron Paul: Well, it’s crazy. I really, really have such a personal connection with this kid but I really felt that I knew where this kid was going and then all of a sudden this season he’s almost like a different person in a way. He’s changed. That’s what I think is so great about the show. It’s a story of change and these characters morph into other characters within themselves. Jesse is in a much darker place. He really is. So the process is a little different. He’s definitely making a valiant effort to try and stay on the clean and sober path.
The process is different but the same in a way. This season I went and spent some time a rehab facility. I didn’t check myself in but I got a tour around the place and berated the guy with questions, asking what living in this sort of facility is like and what’s to stop these people from just walking out the door. He said, ‘Honestly, the door is right there and anyone can walk whenever they want. People come here because they want to get clean.’ So that’s why Jesse stayed there. He was like, ‘I have to do this,’ and if not for anything then for Jane. It’s because of this drug that the love of his life is gone and he’s like, ‘I cannot do this anymore.’ But he definitely still wants to cook and sell it, just not use it.

What was the most challenging scene to do this season or episode?

Aaron Paul: He’s a complicated kid. It’s all so fun. I think maybe the stuff in the hospital was probably the most challenging, just to really get to that place emotionally and really try to stay true to how he’s feeling and not force it. I didn’t want it to come out false. I think that and plus with that damn prosthetic eyepiece, that thing. They just love to beat Jesse down. They really do. I don’t know if they have something against me but they love to put Jesse through the ringer. So doing that scene with this eyepiece on, this full prosthetic piece that goes completely over your eye and was taking about three hours and then we cut it down to two hours the more we put it on, but to have that on all day and then to get into that emotional state of mind was pretty challenging.
Those kinds of things are the most fun for me. It’s almost like therapy in a way, a nice release. You get to get it out. I really feel like I’m kind of this kid at times when I’m playing Jesse. So it’s nice as a character to kind of release those emotions that this kid is feeling. It feels good.

Last time we talked you mentioned one of your other projects called ‘Wreckage’, but I noticed that it hasn’t come out.

Aaron Paul: Yeah, the thing is that I did ‘Wreckage’ years before I even started on ‘Breaking Bad’. It’s crazy. I got asked if I wanted to be a part of that film, and the writer I think I told you last year said, ‘I’m not reinventing the wheel with this one, but it’d be a fun project to do.’ I said alright and he asked about ideas for casting and I said yeah and I just called up a bunch of my friends. A lot of friends my just got involved in it and we flew out to North Carolina and we all stayed in this beach house together and shot it. It was a blast to do and I actually still haven’t even seen it. So I don’t know.

What about anything else that you might have coming up?

Aaron Paul: In terms of other projects right now, it looks like I might be doing this film that shoots in Ireland at the end of June called ‘Earthworks’. I don’t even know if I’m going to be doing it. I like it but we’re just trying to figure out what the best move is. As of right now I’m pretty much trying to find a job.

Season four is coming up, isn’t it?

Aaron Paul: Yeah, season four. I have that coming so that’s good. I’m employed! Thank, God!

And the most important question, what did you think of the finale of ‘Lost’? I know you’re a big fan, so I had to ask about that?

Aaron Paul: Oh my God. I have to tell you that I’m the biggest ‘Lost’ fanatic. I don’t know if I’m the biggest of all time because there are some fanatics out there, definitely. I thought that it was wonderful.

You were satisfied?

Aaron Paul: I was satisfied and this season was like a little bit hit or miss with me but I’m such a huge fan and I would never give up on ‘Lost’ but I loved it. It’s where I thought that it was going. I think a lot of people thought that and so I think that a lot of people were happy. I loved it. Everyone over at ‘Lost’ knows how obsessed I am with the show. I tried over and over and over and over again to just be a featured extra on that show. I said that I would fly myself out there and put myself up, like, ‘Please, just let me be in the background.’ Obviously that didn’t end up happening. But Damon [Lindelof], one of the producers, reached out and invited me to the final celebration of ‘Lost’. It was over at UCLA and they played the second to last episode, a few weeks back. It was like five days before it aired and I was so thrilled. They had a live orchestra, the people who do the music for ‘Lost’ and it was incredible. I’m very sad it’s over. I think that I’m probably going to start re-watching the series once again and never stop. It’s tragic on so many different levels.