SPOILER ALERT: The ‘Breaking Bad’ finale ends with Walter White joining an Ashram, becoming a famous yoga guru and leading the world toward his patented “blue consciousness.”
Yogi Name: Shimmer Parsnip
Jesse Pinkman: Rainbow Edamame
(according to this chart http://bit.ly/11D4VZc)
OK, maybe not. ‘Breaking Bad’ may be over, and maybe it didn’t quite end the way we suggested it would, but the legend of Walter White will live on for many TV years to come. And while the show was full of fascinating characters and talented actors, only one talked about how his yoga practice played a key role in creating the creepily stoic, eerily calm and powerful composure, kingpin Gustavo “Gus” Fring, aka Mr. Pollos aka Giancarlo Esposito in real life.
Sound weird? If you’ve seen the show you know ‘Gus’ has one mean tadasana.
“I made the decision for Gus to be extremely still, more of a listener than a talker,” Esposito said in an interview. So he used his yoga, meditation and breathing exercises to get into character.
“As actors, we like to perform; it’s what stirs us up inside. So I had to find a way to stir myself up inside and yet do less,” Esposito said. “I meditate every morning. And the first thing I do when I get in the dressing room is cross my legs and take a few minutes to take deep, deep breaths and drop into this other place.”
“…Acting can be a spiritual journey,” he added. “And if you can quiet yourself enough to listen to your inner voice and organic movements, you will make the right choices on stage.”
In another interview, Esposito explained how yoga is actually an integral part of his life outside of the show.
“Yoga is a big part of my life now. There’s not a day that goes by where I don’t do an Asana and meditation practice. To me, that’s helped Gus. I’m a real energetic kind of guy. I’m excitable. Gus is the coolest cucumber that ever walked the Earth.”
If you go back and watch old episodes you can almost hear the Darth Vader breath ever so faint in the background. Mr. Esposito himself sounds like a very nice guy, but if we ever bump into him on the street we’ll be sure to say Namaste. Just in case.
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