Bryan Cranston pays visit to USAG Wiesbaden
Bryan Cranston left his gruff Walter White persona behind when he visited U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden July 26. He was all smiles as he held a baby, listened to Soldiers tell their stories and thanked those he met for their service.
Cranston, best known for his roles on the shows Breaking Bad and Malcolm in the Middle, visited with Soldiers, Family members and civilians as part of a USO tour. He signed autographs, took photos with fans and hosted a question and answer session at the Wiesbaden Entertainment Center where he talked about the importance of storytelling and shared his elements for success.
Excelling at different jobs in front of the camera and behind the scenes is something that comes naturally for Cranston. “It’s all storytelling. We pay good money to have people tell us a story. Think about that. Going from acting, directing, writing, producing—they’re all interrelated. Different skill sets, but interrelated around storytelling.”
Although the award-winning actor can’t leave the house without being recognized, he said he didn’t go into his profession with a goal of becoming famous. “I love to act, and it came completely as a result of what I love to do.”
Not that it was easy. It took years of hard work and dedication, something Cranston acknowledged that Soldiers know well. You should always be working; never bored, he said. “Military are risk takers, and that’s an advantage. Add that to your work ethic, courage, talent and go get it.”
His recipe for success: “Talent, perseverance, patience and a healthy dose of luck. No person in the arts has ever succeeded without luck.”
Despite having numerous projects in the works, Cranston scheduled the USO tour, which timing conflicts had prevented in the past. “I’ve wanted to do it for a long time,” he said.
Cranston said it was a treat seeing Soldiers in their element. “It’s very prideful and powering for people to be able to share what they do. And because I’m an actor—and I think an insatiable curiosity is a prerequisite to being an actor—I am interested…I get to play still, but be out of my own world; step into someone else’s world.”
Cranston told the audience at the WEC how much he enjoyed meeting with them on a personal level during lunch and one-on-one visits earlier that day.
“Sometimes I feel like I work a lot and I get sort of insulated. I go from show to show, movie to movie and I feel like I get trapped into a little bubble and this is kind of my way of just popping out of the bubble and being able to be among people that I feel comfortable with, and I really feel comfortable with you all.”
Next up for the actor, among several things he’s working on, is a film called Last Flag Flying, which comes out in November. “It’s a reacquainting of these old military friends… with a task and they kind of slip into their old ways again, ribbing each other…it’s like a brotherhood. It’s a very strong, emotionally charged bonding film. It’s really sweet and poignant and funny.”