"I DON'T do drugs. I am drugs," said the master of surreal art, Salvador Dali.
IT WAS fun seeing the entire cast of "Breaking Bad" on "Conan" the other night (actress Anna Gunn came out clutching her well-deserved Emmy.) And it is fascinating to observe the fan reaction to those anti-heroes Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul (Walt and Jesse)
If they don't both die in Sunday night's finale, I bet AMC could launch another show chronicling the further adventures of Walt and Jesse -- that's how good their chemistry is and how much they clearly like each other. (Although maybe we don't need them cooking meth anymore.) Perhaps Jesse and Walt move to Argentina (with Dexter's killer girlfriend, Hannah, and his child) and launch a real cooking show? Although they'd have to keep Hannah away from the set -- never quite know what she'll slip into the pasta primavera. You cable TV mavens know exactly what I mean, so I'm not going to bother explaining.
Aaron Paul has already been cast as Joshua in Ridley Scott's massive biblical tale, "Exodus." And he has three other feature films in post-production. His fan base, which is massive, feels sure he is headed for Ryan Gosling-style stardom. Aaron is known as one of the most down-to-earth and amiable of celebs, very welcoming to fans, and as cheery as can be about being required to utter his "Breaking Bad" catchphrase, "B---h," in reference to everyone and everything.
However, now married and maybe with a family soon, he might ask fans politely not to use the word. Or ask him to use it. Fame can be a lot of fun when you're single and carefree. But with home-style responsibilities, that's when it can become, uh -- a b--h.
As for villain/anti-hero/the Devil Incarnate/Victim of Circumstance -- Bryan Cranston, he has four feature films upcoming, including the latest reincarnation of Godzilla, and the animated "Kung Fu Panda 3." I fully expect to see him with an Oscar some day. Maybe not for "Godzilla" or "Kung Fu Panda," but in time...
P.S. If you can't get enough about "Breaking Bad," go to YouTube and look for the blooper and gag reels of the show. Hilarious.
"Ohhhhh ... the studio didn't want it. But the director, Mr. Sidney insisted." That was Ann-Margret on the phone with me last week. She was talking about the iconic opening and closing sequences of "Bye Bye Birdie." (Ann-Margret in a filmy beige dress, against a sky blue backdrop, wind machines making sexy swirls with her auburn tresses, while she sang the title song.)
Ann-Margret had called me just to say thanks for what we wrote about her upcoming honor on Oct. 8 at the "Broadway and Beyond." She is a doll, really, and was vastly amused that we had remembered her performance in "Joseph Andrews" as Lady Booby. The actress employed a lush but coarse British accent. When I mentioned how well she did this, she said, "Oh, I love to play with accents -- any kind! It's so much fun." Well, she is a lot of fun, too.
And I can't wait to see her accept her honor in New York. It will be an event because Ann-Margret has mostly avoided the Big Apple. She played Manhattan only once in 1991 at Radio City Music Hall. I think she was always wary of critics. This is a girl who remembers every uncomplimentary remark -- not with bitterness, but with remorse and trepidation.
Ann-Margret was happiest talking to me about the longevity of her marriage to Roger Smith. "46 years! I have been really blessed in life. No kidding."
WELL, HOPING to find a substitute for "Breaking Bad," which will end this coming Sunday, I watched NBC's "The Blacklist" on Monday night. Gratuitous violence and villainy abound and it often makes one turn away from the screen. But actor James Spader is as good as they say. He plays a master criminal who trades his inside knowledge to the FBI on the condition that they make him deal only with a lowly FBI beauty -- brunette actress Megan Boone.
I know I've taken some shots at the organization but in this one episode alone, the FBI couldn't possibly be as witless as they are portrayed. There is one unbelievable foul-up after another and lots of simply-too-complicated-to-be happening stuff. But I will give this show a few more chances and maybe it will become as great as they are saying it is.
SOMETHING NEW is on the way for fans of historical drama -- even if it's wildly fictionalized. "Reign" purports to tell of the teenage years of Mary Queen of Scots. It's coming from the CW Network of all places. Since these are Mary's teenage years, it'll probably be very "Mean Girls" in bejeweled bodices. But if I can find the CW on my TV lineup, I might give it a go when it debuts on Oct. 17.
Nothing will ever compare to "The Tudors" or "Rome," but we can't give up. After all, "The Borgias" was quite good before they ran out of money and cut its throat.
RISE4JUSTICE: Eve Ensler, defender of women and a Tony-winning playwright, wants us to join her Saturday, Oct. 5 and Tuesday, Oct. 29, for "One Billion Rising for Justice." The events are part of the Rise4Justice speaker series, which according to its site examines "the meaning of justice to activists working globally to end gender violence and oppression." Tickets are $25. Location: Deepak Homebase at ABC Carpet and Home 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Contact http://www.vday.org/mj. Malalai Joya, a former parliamentarian in the national assembly of Afghanistan, and Dr. Denis Mukwege, founder of the Panzi Hospital in Bukavu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo where he specializes in the treatment of women, will speak.
(E-mail Liz Smith at MES3838@aol.com.)
(c)2013 TRIBUNE CONTENT AGENCY, LLC.
What does the future hold for our favorite meth cooks -- Walt and Jesse?
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