If I were an actor (I just mentally said that in Tobias Fünke's voice: "AC-TORE"), I can only imagine how gratifying it would be for a fellow industry veteran -- one I greatly admired, even -- praise my performance. Now, I'm not sure if Breaking Bad's Bryan Cranston does in fact greatly admire Sir Anthony Hopkins, but come on, he HAS to. It's Anthony freaking Hopkins, one of the greatest actors that has ever walked the earth. When Anthony Hopkins says your performance was the best acting he's ever seen, I'm pretty sure that little moment trumps ALL the Emmys.
Not only did Anthony Hopkins take the time to express his admiration to Cranston and the rest of the Breaking Bad gang, he did so in a letter that's so downright magical, I would swear it's a fake -- except it's been confirmed by Hopkins' publicist. If this letter isn't the most powerful endorsement of Breaking Bad to date, I don't know what the hell is.
The letter was originally shared over the weekend by Breaking Bad actor Steven Michael Quezada (DEA agent Steven Gomez) on his Facebook page. It went viral almost immediately, but on Monday the post, along with a tweet about it from Quezada, disappeared.
Sounds like a hoax, right? Wrong: Hopkins' publicist, Arnold Robinson, has confirmed to multiple media outlets that the letter was indeed real. I'm guessing Quezada just didn't quite realize how much attention the letter would get, and felt awkward once it started popping up all over the web.
Well, hopefully Sir Anthony is okay with the world having access to his emailed exaltation, because I think it's almost as delightful for the fans as it was for the cast. Here it is, in its entirety:
Dear Mister Cranston.
I wanted to write you this email -- so I am contacting you through Jeremy Barber -- I take it we are both represented by UTA. Great agency.
I’ve just finished a marathon of watching “BREAKING BAD” -- from episode one of the First Season -- to the last eight episodes of the Sixth Season. (I downloaded the last season on AMAZON) A total of two weeks (addictive) viewing.
I have never watched anything like it. Brilliant!
Your performance as Walter White was the best acting I have seen -- ever.
I know there is so much smoke blowing and sickening bullshit in this business, and I’ve sort of lost belief in anything really.
But this work of yours is spectacular -- absolutely stunning. What is extraordinary, is the sheer power of everyone in the entire production. What was it? Five or six years in the making? How the producers (yourself being one of them), the writers, directors, cinematographers ... every department -- casting etc. managed to keep the discipline and control from beginning to the end is (that over used word) awesome.
From what started as a black comedy, descended into a labyrinth of blood, destruction and hell. It was like a great Jacobean, Shakespearian or Greek Tragedy.
If you ever get a chance to -- would you pass on my admiration to everyone -- Anna Gunn, Dean Norris, Aaron Paul, Betsy Brandt, R.J. Mitte, Bob Odenkirk, Jonathan Banks, Steven Michael Quezada -- everyone -- everyone gave master classes of performance ... The list is endless.
Thank you. That kind of work/artistry is rare, and when, once in a while, it occurs, as in this epic work, it restores confidence.
You and all the cast are the best actors I’ve ever seen.
That may sound like a good lung full of smoke blowing. But it is not. It’s almost midnight out here in Malibu, and I felt compelled to write this email.
Congratulations and my deepest respect. You are truly a great, great actor.
How great is that? Seriously, I could not love this more, even if it does sound a tiny bit like the sort of thing a person would send after they've had, say, a third glass of a nice Chianti. I'm particularly charmed by the idea of Mr. Hopkins -- Tony -- holed up in his Malibu mansion, binge-watching Breaking Bad. From "AMAZON." Stars: they're just like Us!
Image via Orion Pictures