Cranston portrayed White on Breaking Bad for five seasons, winning five Emmys for Outstanding Lead Actor for his performance. While the character (spoiler alert) dies at the end of the series, creator Vince Gilligan asked Cranston to reprise his role for a brief cameo at the end of the new Breaking Bad sequel movie, El Camino, which primarily focuses on Aaron Paul’s character, Jesse Pinkman. The cameo plays out in a flashback set during the events of the Season Two episode, “4 Days Out.”
During the original series run, Cranston shaved his head to play White, who is diagnosed with cancer at the beginning of the show and loses his hair during chemotherapy. But because Cranston didn’t have time to shave for El Camino, he was instead fitted with a bald cap. The time-lapse video Cranston shared on Twitter captures the El Camino makeup team — Cheri Monsanto, Garrett Immel and Laverne Munroe — meticulously applying the bald cap and affixing White’s famous mustache.
I don’t know why filming takes so long, I became Walter White in less than a minute.
Cheri Montesanto: Department Head of Make Up and Special Makeup Fx
Garrett Immel: Prosthetic Make Up Artist for Bald Cap
Laverne Munroe: Key Make Up Artist@netflix #elcamino pic.twitter.com/nMfKqXVfR2
— Bryan Cranston (@BryanCranston) October 21, 2019
While the process likely took some time, Cranston quipped on Twitter, “I don’t know why filming takes so long, I became Walter White in less than a minute.”
Speaking with Rolling Stone about his El Camino cameo, Cranston recalled how quickly he fell back into character. “There are so many talismans I was using on a day-to-day basis during the shooting: his glasses, his shirt, the Wallabees,” Cranston said. “I immediately popped back into that character. Being in Albuquerque, being around a lot of the same crew, having Aaron there, and Vince, and [producer] Melissa Bernstein, I tweaked a little bit, because it’s like, ‘Oh my god, six years, and we’re back!’ It felt a little eerie. In a good way.”