Giancarlo Esposito talks Breaking Bad, Playing a Villain, and Beginning a “Revolution”
Entertainment Weekly recently interviewed actor Giancarlo Esposito about working on AMC’s Breaking Bad, playing a villain, and starring un J.J. Abrams upcoming NBC show, Revolutions.
Beware…. here there be spoilers!
“What I didn’t count on was being so committed to Gus’s emotional state.”
If you’ve been watching Breaking Bad these past few years then you are quite familiar with Giancarlo Esposito. For the past two seasons he played Walter White’s (Bryan Cranston) nemesis Gustavo Fring. Until the season 4 finale, that is, when Gus came to a sticky end. Esposito has been acting since he was a mere 8 years old, and has been a staple in film and television for the past four decades. With roles in films like The Cotton Club (1984) and The Usual Suspects (1995) Esposito found constant work, but it wasn’t until he joined the acclaimed Homicide: Life on the Street (1998-1999) as Agent Mike Giardello that he became a household name.
Giancarlo Esposito talked to Entertainment Weekly about filming “Hermanos” last season on Breaking Bad, which gave some insight into who Gus was 20 years before we (the audience) meet him. Being half African-American and half Italian, Esposito learned Spanish for the episode.
“I was about to be with Spanish speakers who were all fluent in Spanish. I didn’t want to be the weak link in the scene in terms of the language, so I really buckled down to learn the language…. It’s not typical Spanish. It’s Chilean Spanish. And we had a Puerto Rican speaker. We had a Spanish speaker from Spain. All of them had different ways of saying the same thing. But thank goodness I take what I do seriously and really love it. I wanted not to offend any Chilean Spanish speakers.”
Esposito is so dead on as a hardened criminal that he has discovered that people have begun to treat him differently in real life. Even though he no longer is on the hit show, he finds that people often have difficulty separating Giancarlo from Gus.
“People are afraid of me on planes. I got up on a plane a couple weeks ago to go to the bathroom and a woman froze in her tracks and I didn’t know why because, of course, I’m just being me. I realize it’s because they have really bought into Gusdom and they are very careful about how they approach me. It’s kind of great to walk around and be called “Sir” everywhere you go.”
Since his stint on Breaking Bad has come to an end, Giancarlo has had a role on ABC’s Once Upon a Time as Sidney Glass AKA the Magic Mirror. While filming OUAT, Esposito also shot the latest James Patterson novel to be adapted for the big screen, Alex Cross, starring Tyler Perry. The film which also stars Matthew Fox (LOST) hits theaters October 19, 2012.
Esposito can next be seen in NBC’s latest foray into science fiction, Revolution in which he will play Captain Neville. Besides Esposito, Revolution also stars Billy Burke (The Twilight Saga), and is created by Eric Kripke (Supernatural). When asked what people can expect from his new show, which is produced by J.J. Abrams, Esposito said:
“Whereas Gus is very held in and keeps things close to the vest and put together, Captain Neville is a little more of a loose cannon. He is frightening in a different way that Gus is. He’s a master manipulator, similar to Gus, but he does it in a very different way. And I think he’s living it out his life having been an accountant, before all the power went out and being very controlled—he’s now living his dark side in a very uncontrolled way.”
To read more of what Giancarlo Esposito has to say about shooting “Hermanos”, playing Gus Fring, and Revolutions be sure to read the complete article over at Entertainment Weekly.
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