Giancarlo Esposito Considered Planning His Own Murder for Life Insurance Money Before Landing ‘Breaking Bad’

Giancarlo Esposito’s role as Gus Fring, the fast food franchise owner who moonlights as a lethal drug lord, made him one of the most beloved parts of “Breaking Bad” and “Better Call Saul.” But while his performance in Vince Gilligan’s New Mexico-set TV universe earned him two Emmy nominations and paved the way for him to enter some of Hollywood’s biggest franchises, the actor has not forgotten the dark moments he faced early in his career.

In a new interview with SiriusXM’s “Jim & Sam” (via Variety), Esposito detailed his early struggles as an unemployed actor. He revealed that at his lowest point, he even considered planning his own murder so that his family could receive a life insurance payout.

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“My way out in my brain was: ‘Hey, do you get life insurance if someone commits suicide? Do they get the bread?’” Esposito said. “[My wife] had no idea why I was asking her this stuff… I just started scheming. If I got somebody to knock me off, death through misadventure, [my kids] would get the insurance. I had four kids. I wanted them to have a life. It was a hard moment in time. I literally thought of self-annihilation so they could survive. That’s how low I was.”

Fortunately, Esposito never went through with the plan, a decision that he states was partially made out of love and a sense of obligation to his children. The actor explained that being cast on “Breaking Bad” provided him a way out of the dark place and put his career on track.

“That was the first inkling that there was a way out, but I wouldn’t be here to be available… to my kids,” he said. “Then I started to think that’s not viable because the pain I would cause them would be lifelong, and lifelong trauma that would just extend the generational trauma which I’m trying to move away from. The light at the end of the tunnel was ‘Breaking Bad.’”

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