Penn Badgley calls his ‘Breaking Bad’ role ‘One That Got Away’

“At that moment, it was the best television script I’d ever read,” the “You” star said.

Penn Badgley almost broke.

The “You” star admitted that his role as Jesse Pinkman in “Breaking Bad” is his best “get away” in terms of roles.

“One that I came so close to was ‘Breaking Bad.’ It was between me and Aaron Paul,” Badgley told Buzzfeed. “We tested it. And it was actually the best television script I read at the time. This was the one that got away.”

AMC’s drama “Breaking Bad” premiered in 2008, just months after Badgley made her debut on “Gossip Girl” in 2007. Badgley’s “Gossip Girl” co-star Chace Crawford revealed in 2019 that Badgley starred in both parts of Jesse Pinkman. and Dan Humphrey simultaneously.

“If you want an interesting story, Penn screen-tested Jesse. She didn’t even audition for “Gossip Girl”; they offered him — but I remember him telling me he tested for Jesse,” Crawford said The independent. “He would have been another choice, but right around the time Gossip Girl was cast, he screen tested, but Aaron Paul got it instead.”

Even Breaking Bad actor Paul said that Badgley instantly looked up to the audition.

“When he walked in, I said, ‘Oh my God, this guy looks like a meth addict,'” Paul recalled. Entertainment Weekly. “In a good way! He was just in the role. I was like, ‘This guy is going to steal it from me.’

Badgley is now comparing prodigy author Dan Humphrey’s arc to Joe Goldberg’s iconic turn in Netflix’s You, proving that Badgley ultimately went wrong in a different way.

“It’s the same role. But now he’s got blood running down his face,” Badgley previously said The New Yorker. “To me, Joe is privilege incarnate. He is the blindness that comes with privilege. That’s the whole weirdness of the show. In some ways, this bizarre kind of fantastical, consumable thing, like “Gossip Girl.” At the same time, it’s like ugh! This is awful!”

Badgley told IndieWire that he wants to write and direct a feature film next after optioning the rights to David Sedaris’ short story Jamboree. The “Easy A” alum will make his directorial debut with “You” season 4 episode 9, which will debut on March 9.

“Because of the role, and I’ve been doing it for a while, I really rooted for it. I really enjoyed it,” Badgley said of directing. “I loved being behind the camera. But I think it might be a bit much, being Joe and directing. I had no time at all. I had no time to live for about four weeks.”

He added: “I don’t know if I can direct any more of this show because I can’t watch enough, just from a practical point of view. I don’t have enough time to go through every shot, so I’m directing with my eyes closed.”


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