Small time attorney James "Jimmy" McGil was first introduced to our tv screens as Saul Goodman in the hit series "Breaking Bad". "Better Call Saul" is a spin-off prequel that takes place six years before his appearance on "Breaking Bad".
Heading into its fourth season, "Better Call Saul" has made a name for itself and has proven to be just as solid as its predecessor. The series has garnered 10 Emmy Nominations for the 69th Annual Emmy Awards including Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series for Bob Odenkirk's portrayal as Saul Goodman.
At a recent screening, the two time Emmy Winner spoke candidly about developing his award winning performance and lessons he's learned over the course of his career.
"Our actors on our show comment a lot on the script and the scene.
We talk a lot about it from when we get the script, in rehearsals, we
may write an email or give a phone call [to the writers] and say, 'Hey
I'm a little unsure of if I'm angry or am I aware of what's happening
[in the scene] or am I unaware of whats happening?' and very often
the writers will say 'we know, we talked about that,' or 'we talked about
that. other possibility,' or 'we talkedabout that other option, but here's
the logic of it...' and that's great.
And then there are times where [the writers] will say '[the action] is what
he does. We need him to do it. It fits for us.' Then its it's your job as an
actor to figure out the pressures, the hopes, the growth in the character
that makes the progression [in the scene] make sense. It's not good for
an actor to get a script and say 'well he could have said this.' No, that's the
script, that's what [the line] is, now it's your job to take that emotional.
wholeness and make it make sense. Then you play it as simply and as
honestly as you can." People are complexed. And you have to do the
math of what you're choosing and wanting differently: when you're with
family, when you're alone, when you're a little older, when a bad thing
just happened to you."
During the audience Q&A, an audience member posed the question "When did you know you were good?" Bib Odenkirk frankly replied,
"You only know you're good for a few short seconds. I think you should enjoy
it when you do. Tomorrow you might suck. Around the age of 35 I began to
ask myself, what separates the really good people from the ones who are really
hit and miss? Anytime you go away for any length of time, it's hit and miss. You
really have to have a little bit of luck to make this thing come together: a film,
a play, a tv show, these creative endeavors, these group endeavors, there just has
to be some luck in there."
Closing off the evening, Bob Odenkirk left the actors a few words of wisdom:
"Always try your best. There have been times when I didn't try and it's not a good feeling to get called out when you read a review and you go, 'yea, he's right'.
It's not so bad to go, 'he's right, that's how it turned out or didn't turn out but we
f^%king tried. I did my f^%king best.' It doesn't hurt to hear a criticism when you
gave it your all and you worked every angle you could to make it work."
Better Call Saul season 4 will premiere in Spring 2018.