Last week, the Breaking Bad spin-off, Better Call Saul, was given a premiere date (early 2015, following the winter episodes of The Walking Dead), was renewed a second season, and we got our first official look from the set. What I also found interesting was that, according to Deadline, Vince Gilligan had been elevated to co-showrunner, along with Peter Gould (who created the Saul character on Breaking Bad). Gilligan has previously only planned to be heavily involved with the pilot, but afterwards, act in only consulting/producing capacity before letting Gould completely take over.
There’s a couple of ways to look at that: Gilligan likes the project so much he wants to stick around; Gilligan has nothing else to do at the moment, so he’s going to stick around; Peter Gould is not quite up to the task yet, so Gilligan is stepping in to get him up to speed; or Deadline misread the situation and Gilligan really is only acting as co-showrunner for the pilot.
Either way, what we do know now is Aaron Paul’s official involvement, which is that he’s not involved. Despite many hints that he’d be making a cameo appearance in the Breaking Bad prequel, he shot down the very rumors he started.
From his interview with HuffPo in support of Hellion:
“To be honest, it’s not gonna happen,” Paul said about Jesse’s possible return in a separate discussion on Friday. “There’s rumors floating around that I’m going to be doing it, but that’s simply not the case. […] I mean, I’m trying to let it be on the record.”
Paul previously said he had “serious talks” with Vince Gilligan about returning to Jesse, but downplayed those conversations.
“We haven’t talked about it,” Paul said to HuffPost Entertainment. “I mean, we’ve joked around about it, but it’s a prequel. I have no idea how [Jesse] would show up. I’m much older now. But I don’t look older, I look kinda younger, which is strange.”
So, either he’s being honest, and there’s no way to work him into the series, or he’s lying his face off in order to ensure his background appearance on the show ultimately becomes a pleasant surprise.