Dammit. Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in with that gorgeous sky. After Breaking Bad’s supremely satisfying finale capped off one of television’s best series, I really had no desire to revisit the show, whether through prequel, sequel or otherwise. In fact, after Vince Gilligan spoke about his Better Call Saul concerns, I felt like I’d be happier just ignoring the whole follow-up series. But then I saw that header photo…and that gorgeous Albuquerque sky again, and I think I might be sucked back in. Damn you, Gilligan!
Appearing at the Television Critics Association press tour, Gilligan and co-creator Peter Gould gave a few details about the upcoming series, which AMC has already green-lighted for two seasons:
Better Call Saul is set in 2002, about six years before Saul met Walter White.
Bob Odenkirk and Jonathan Banks will reprise their roles as Saul Goodman and Mike Ehrmantraut, respectively. The series looks back at Saul, aka Jimmy McGill, a small-time lawyer and hustler who later transforms into the Saul we know and love.
Lenny himself, Michael McKean (Family Tree, Happy Endings, Homeland, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Children’s Hospital) is the first non-Breaking Bad cast member to be announced; he’ll play Saul’s brother, Chuck.
Also confirmed are Rhea Seehorn (House of Lies, Franklin & Bash, Whitney), Patrick Fabian (The Newsroom, The Last Excorcism), and Michael Mando (Orphan Black, Elysium).
The series may flash forward and back; Gilligan said, “…we like non-linear storytelling and jumping around in time…I would point you in the direction, that anything that’s possible in Breaking Bad is possible in Better Call Saul.”
Skies aside, the series won’t be a carbon copy of Breaking Bad. “Peter came with an idea book of frame grabs from classic movies, like The Conformist, we talked a lot about Kubrick. We’re doing our damnedest to make it as different as possible.
Gilligan asked for a bump from fall 2014 to early 2015. “I am slow as mud as a TV writer…We have a way of doing things that are slower than most TV shows.”
Giancarlo Esposito’s Gus Fring and Bryan Cranston’s Walter White “could” make an appearance if it makes sense.
Great (Breaking Bad) directors are coming…
Episode 2: Michelle MacLaren (Game of Thrones, The Leftovers, The Walking Dead) Episode 1 and 3: Terry McDonough (Halt and Catch Fire, An Adventure in Space and Time )
Episode 4: Colin Bucksey (Fargo, Killer Women, Revenge)
Episdoe 5: Adam Bernstein (Californication, Fargo, House of Lies)