The cast of the acclaimed 'Breaking Bad' TV series has reunited, not to cook meth, but to call upon Hollywood studios to reengage in negotiations with striking screen actors.
“We want you to come back to the table with us,” Bryan Cranston, who played family-man-turned-drug-kingpin Walter White, said in a plea to the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) outside Sony Pictures Studios on Tuesday.
Cranston was joined by Aaron Paul, Jesse Plemons and other members of the 'Breaking Bad' universe in an effort to energise picket lines more than a month after SAG-AFTRA joined the striking Hollywood writers guild.
Both guilds are seeking to address issues brought about by the dominance of streaming services, which have changed all aspects of production and pay in the industry.
A reunion with a cause
“The way things were structured 10 years ago made a lot of sense and it made it more possible for journeymen-type actors, actors in the middle that are working just as a hard or harder,” Plemons, who portrayed Todd Alquist in the final season of 'Breaking Bad' said.
“I don’t get a piece from Netflix on ‘Breaking Bad’ to be totally honest and that’s insane to me,” Paul said. “I think a lot of these streamers know that they have been getting away with not paying people a fair wage and now it’s time to pony up.”
Cranston said they chose Sony for their reunion as the studio behind the Emmy-winning hit, along with its spinoff projects, the AMC prequel series 'Better Call Saul' and the Netflix film, El Camino.
“We’re not making them the enemy. They are not villains. These are people that we all will be working with once again at some point,” Cranston said. “We just want them to see reality.”
Cast members of 'Better Call Saul' were also on the picket lines, including Rhea Seehorn and Patrick Fabian, along with the series co-creator, Peter Gould, who has been on strike with the Writers Guild of America since May.