In the hugely acclaimed and multi-award-winning drama Breaking Bad, Bryan Cranston played Walter White – a character in a respectable profession who begins partaking in illicit behaviour to help out his family.
In the new drama Your Honor – coming to Sky Atlantic next week – Bryan Cranston plays Michael Desiato… a character in a respectable profession who begins partaking in illicit behaviour to help out his family.
But the actor has explained that his new character is actually rather different from his previous role, which saw him win four Primetime Emmy Awards in just five years.
Speaking to RadioTimes.com and other press ahead of the series launch, he explained, “Well there’s always going to be similarities because I’m the actor who played both characters!
“But when you look at the differences, Walter White was very methodical in his chosen journey, he planned it out and went there purposefully.
“With my character in Your Honor, it happens impulsively, he has to make an immediate decision on whether or not he can save the life of his child, and that’s his journey.”
Your Honor revolves around Michael Desiato, a respected judge living and working in New Orleans, whose life is turned upside down when his son Adam (Hunter Doohan) is involved in a hit and run.
It is based on the Israeli show Kvodo, which began airing in 2017 – but Cranston says he made sure not to watch the original version before shooting the series, as he didn’t want to be influenced by Yoram Hattab’s performance in the lead role.
“When I develop a character I do want to do as much research as possible, but in the case of watching another actor’s performance in a different iteration of the same story it didn’t feel helpful to me,” he explained.
“I’m looking forward to seeing it now, because my work in this season has been completed so I can’t be influenced. And I certainly don’t want to steal something else that another actor has done, but once you watch something it gets in there so it’s best to stay away from it.”
Speaking of the central theme of Your Honor – the question of how far a parent will go to protect their child – Cranston said that the series presents a very relatable scenario for many viewers, and he thinks some people watching will find themselves thinking they’d have done the same thing as his character.
And he also believes some people would go to extra lengths to protect their child in a desperate situation even if they told themselves they wouldn’t cross certain lines.
“I think every human being has an internal human trigger that we can’t even see,” he said. “We’re not always conscious of where that is, but boy when it happens it happens quickly.
“We see it in wild animals, the bear protecting its cubs becomes aggressive simply because that mama bear feels its cub is in danger. So there you have it, we see that everywhere – and humans are no different.
“Just because we have a bigger brain and we’re educated as opposed to animals, it doesn’t mean we don’t have that trigger, and we can’t always control it.
“And the premise of Your Honor is that that trigger is pulled and he makes an impulsive decision that will have a ripple effect on the rest of his life.”
Your Honor starts on Sky Atlantic on Tuesday 2nd March 2021 and is available to watch on demand on NOW TV – check out our Drama hub for all the latest news
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