Bryan Cranston

  • Aired:  03/24/14
  •  | Views: 26,757

Bryan Cranston discusses his role as Lyndon B. Johnson in Broadway's "All the Way" and reflects on LBJ's habit of talking about his balls. (5:57)

>> WELCOME BACK, MY GUESTTONIGHT IS A MULTIPLE EMMY

AWARD-WINNING ACTER WHO ISNOW APPEARING ON BROADWAY.

IF THE SHOW IS A HIT HEMIGHT GET A TV SHOW OUT OF

IT.

PLEASE WELCOME BRYANCRANSTON!

HI, BRYAN, GOOD TO SEE YOU,THANKS FOR COMING BACK.

>> MY PLEASURE, MY PLEASURE.

GOOD TO SEE YOU.

>> Stephen: I HAVE NOT SEENYOU.

GOOD TO YOU HAVE BACK.

I HAVE NOT SEEN YOU SINCEYOU AND I ROLLER DISCOED

TOGETHER FOR THE DAFT PUNKVIDEO.

>> I KNOW.

>> Stephen: EVERYBODY KNOWSYOU WERE HAL IN MALCOLM IN

THE MIDDLE.

WALTER WHITE BREAKING BAD!

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)>> Stephen: THEY REMEMBERED.

MONTHS LATER, THEY STILLREMEMBER.

>> THANK GOD, YES.

>> Stephen: BUT NOW YOU'REPLAYING AN EVEN MORE

CHALLENGING CHARACTER.

YOU'RE PLAYING LBJ, LYNDONBAINES JOHNSON ON BROADWAY

AT THE NEIL SIMON THEATRE,ALL THE WAY.

>> YEAH.

>> Stephen: OPENED SAW IT AWEEK AGO FRIDAY.

>> WHAT DID YOU THINK.

>> Stephen: TREMENDOUS.

NO ROLLER DISCO.

>> I WAS PITCHING FOR THAT,THEY SAID NO.

>> Stephen: WHY DO A PLAYAFTER BEING A HUGE TV STAR?

>> IT'S ALL ABOUT THEWRITING AND THE CHARACTER.

THIS CHARACTER ISSHAKESPEARIAN, HE'S LIKE

KING LEAR, HE'S HUGE.

>> Stephen: HE'S PRESIDENT.

>> HE'S PRESIDENT LEAR.

HE'S LIKE THE "GODZILLA" OFPRESIDENTS.

>> Stephen: RIGHT.

I REALLY BELIEVED YOU ASLBJ.

WHEN YOU CAME OUT FOR YOURCURTAIN CALLS, YOU KNOW, THE

LIGHTS WENT DOWN AFTER YOUSAY YOUR FINAL LINE, THE

LIGHTS CAME BACK UP ANDSUDDENLY YOU'RE BRIAN

CRANSTON.

WHAT ARE YOU DOING TOYOURSELF ON STAGE TO MAKE

YOURSELF LBJ?

>> ARE YOU LIKE, ARE YOULIKE YOUR POSTURE IS

DIFFERENT, YOUR FACE ISDIFFERENT, ARE YOU ACTING?

>>.

>> YEAH, I'M-- YOU KNOW,OVER THE COURSE OF REHEARSAL

YOU TAKE IN HIS CHARACTER.

YOU SEE AND YOU TALK AND YOUJUST ABSORB WHO THIS GUY IS.

AND YOU LISTEN TO THE TAPESTHAT HE MADE AND YOU WATCH

HIS MANNERISMS.

AND YOU DON'T WANT TO DO ANIMPERSONATION BUT YOU WANT

TO GET AN ESSENCE OF HIM, AFLAVOR OF HIM SO I ALWAYS

KNOW THAT WHEN I'M READY TOPERFORM IS WHEN THAT

CHARACTER CEASES TO BEOUTSIDE OF ME AND IS

WELCOMED INSIDE, SO TOSPEAK.

YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN?

YOU ACT.

>> Stephen: NO, I DON'T.

>> YES.

>> Stephen: I DON'TUNDERSTAND.

I DON'T UNDERSTAND AT ALL.

BUT THIS IS PRETTY BIG THISIS A PRETTY BIG CHARACTER.

WAS LBJ REALLY, THISLARGER-THAN-LIFE FIGURE THAT

YOU ARE PORTRAYING HIM ASBECAUSE HE WAS SAYING TO THE

HEAD OF HANGER BLACK AZIPPER SHOULD ALWAYS BE AT

LEAST AN INCH OF AWAY FROMTHE BACK OF YOUR BUNGHOLE

>> HE HAD A PET NAME FOR HISJOHNSON, HIS JOHNSON'S

JOHNSON.

HE CALLED IT JUMBO.

AND APPARENTLY IT WAS APTLYNAMED.

>> Stephen: REALLY?

>> YEAH.

>> Stephen: COULD HE PICK UPPEANUTS WITH IT.

NOT ENOUGH-- NOT ENOUGHPRESIDENTS TALK ABOUT THEIR

BALLS.

>> NO, I KNOW, I KNOW.

>> Stephen: THIS GUYLITERALLY WOULD GRAB HIS NUT

SACK WHEN HE WAS EATING.

>> HE WOULD GRAB HIS NUTSACK, TAKE A CRAP IN FRONT

OF PEOPLE.

WE BRING THEM FROM THE OVALOFFICE INTO THE PRIVATE

BATHROOM, DROP HIS DRAWERSAND TAKE A CRAP.

>> Stephen: DO YOU THINKOBAMA COULD GET MORE

LEGISLATION PASSED IF HEWOULD JUST DROP IT IN FRONT

OF BOEHNER.

JUST PINCHED ONE OFF.

>> THAT'S GOT TO BE THETITLE OF ONE OF HIS MEMOIRS,

DROPPING A DEUCE IN FRONT OFBOEHNER.

>> Stephen: WHY DID JOHNSONCARE SO MUCH.

THE PLAY TAKES PLACE FROM1963, NOVEMBER OF '63 AFTER

THE ASSASSINATION OFPRESIDENT KENNEDY TO

NOVEMBER OF '64 WHEN JOHNSONIS RE-ELECTED, SPOILER

ALERT.

AND IT'S REALLY ABOUT HIMDRIVING THROUGH THE CIVIL

RIGHTS LEGISLATION.

WHY DID IT MATTER TO HIM?

HE'S A GUY FROM TEXAS WHICHIS NOT A GREAT STATE FOR

CIVIL RIGHTS.

>> NO.

>> Stephen: WHY DO YOU THINKHE DROVE THIS SO MUCH.

DID THAT SURPRISE YOU?

>> IT DID SURPRISE A LOT OFPEOPLE.

WHEN HE WAS FRESHLY OUT OFCOLLEGE, A YEAR OUT OF

TEACHER'S COLLEGE IN TEXAS,SMALL TEACHERS COLLEGE.

THE JOB HE COULD GET WAS ATTHIS LITTLE TINY ELEMENTARY

SCHOOL IN CATOOLA TEXASWHERE HE TAUGHT FIRST GRADE

TO THESE LITTLE MIGRANT FARMWORKER KIDS.

WHO DIDN'T SPEAK ENGLISH.

BUT AND DIDN'T HAVE A PENNYTO THEIR NAME.

BUT THEY WERE SO EAGER TOLEARN AND THEY LISTENED AND

HE LOVED THESE KIDS.

AND HE WITNESSED HOW THEYWERE MISTREATED BY THE WHITE

PREDOMINANT PEOPLE IN THECOMMUNITY.

AND IT AFFECTED HIM DEEPLY.

>> Stephen: AS I SAID YOUWERE HAL IN MALCOLM IN THE

MIDDLE AND WALTER WHITEBREAKING BAD.

-- BAD, IS JOHNSON CLOSER TOHAL OR WHITE, YOU HAD TO PUT

HIM ON A CONTINUUM BECAUSETHERE IS A RANGE THERE.

>> WELL, HAL AND WALTER WEREBOTH TIGHTY WHITEY GUYS.

JOHNSON IS A COMMANDO MAN.

>> Stephen: YES.

IS THERE ANY-- (APPLAUSE)

THAT'S HEAVY.

WAS THERE ANY-- WAS THEREANY, YOU KNOW, PEOPLE KNOW

YOU FROM WALTER WHITE ANDLOVE IT, WAS THERE ANY

TEMPTATION TO PUT A LITTLEWALTER WHITE IN THIS PLAY.

>> GOD, I HOPE NOT.

>> Stephen: YOU COULD HAVEMADE HUBERT HUMPHREY JESSE --

>> YOU KNOW.

>> Stephen: I WOULDN'T MINDHAVING HIM YELL TO THE

SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE, THAT'SHOW YOU PASS LEGISLATION,

BITCH!

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

BRYAN CRANSTON TO, ALL THEWAY ON BROADWAY GO SEE IT

WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK.

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