Cranston says Mad Men helped him decide to say yes to Breaking Bad. "I told AMC's [then executive vp] Rob Sorcher, 'I'm nervous. I love this, but it needs to be treated delicately and with support,' " recalls Cranston, 57. "And then I get this envelope with the Mad Men pilot and a note from Rob saying: 'This is what we aim to do.' I watched, mouth agape, and said, 'OK, I'm good, let's go!' "
Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman
Paul says it's hard to say goodbye to his alter ego, Jesse Pinkman. "I love the kid! I lived and breathed every moment of his existence," says Paul. "I'll miss everything about him -- even his bedazzled shirts."
Creator Vince Gilligan
"My favorite memory was the last day of shooting. It was the teaser of Walt and Jesse back in time cooking their very first batch," the show's creator says. "There were a lot of tears that day. When the last shot was finished, a lot of people started tearing up. I did too. We broke out the champagne."
Anna Gunn as Skyler White
"Everything Vince did with all the characters is so smart, and it's exactly where all of them should end up," Gunn says of the series finale. "When I read that final episode, I thought it was exactly where everyone should be."
Dean Norris as Hank Schrader
"Breaking Bad fans have always been amazingly passionate, and I'm always appreciative. They never just say, 'Hey, I like your show.' It's like, 'This show changed my life,'" Norris says. "It's great to see that reaction, that you could be on a show that causes that. It's funny, after I (whispering) 'died' on the show, I waited a little amount of time before I tweeted some jokey things."
Betsy Brandt as Marie Schrader
"The awkward guacamole dinner scene was one of my favorite moments but also one of my hardest days on the show," she says of the episode in which Marie tells Walt to commit suicide. After the scene finished, she started sobbing and asked Cranston if she could hug him. "I said 'I hate looking you in the eye and meaning that while I say it.' It made me physically sick." But there was a silver lining after the tough scene, which was shot in a real Albuquerque restaurant. "We all had margaritas together after and posed for a picture ... I just love this group so much."
R.J. Mitte as Walter White Jr.
"It was one of my first days on set -- the scene where they are making fun of me at the clothing store," Mitte says of his favorite Walt Jr. memory. "That day changed my life forever. I never thought I'd be an actor. It was never something I aspired for. When I got on that set, that's when I knew it was what I wanted to do."
Bob Odenkirk as Saul Goodman
"The first episode I was in with Saul, out in the desert, in a sandstorm at 2 a.m., kneeling over a freshly dug grave was a really, really great scene to play and be a part of," Odenkirk says of his favorite Saul moment. "This show has been an entree into a new dimension on my opportunities in this business. And I can't appreciate it enough."
Jonathan Banks as Mike Ehrmantraut
On his favorite Mike moments: "I loved being with Jesse out in the desert. I loved being with the kid." Banks also jokes that his character shouldn't have died. "They should have let me write it," he says, adding: "It had to be a mistake of some kind."
Steven Michael Quezada as Steve Gomez
The actor credits the show with saving his career ("I'm not a spring chicken," he remarks) and says it's an honor to be on "the best TV show ever. Even when I'm gone, I'm alive on that show," he says. "That's the only way to live forever, man."
Charles Baker as Skinny Pete
"We were the comic relief or a break from the tension. But we always got these great, epic moments. All of the nerd conversations we've had -- we talked about Star Trek, Star Wars, video games -- those have been so fun," Baker says, adding that he loved getting to play piano in an early season five episode. "It's kind of weird being locked in a character who is such a lowlife -- who's dumb, inarticulate and illiterate, and seems like your basic scumbag. To be able to jump out and throw this at people and go, 'Oh, yeah, he used to be this' -- it was really endearing to me. That was a beautiful moment."
Laura Fraser as Lydia Rodarte-Quayle
"I really liked doing the scene in the first part of season five with Mike and Walt and Jesse all together," Fraser says, referring to "Dead Freight" in which the men are deciding whether to kill her. "They all had something to say, and they were all disgusted with Lydia, and she's fighting for her life. It was the three of them against me. I was terrified doing it, but I also got a real thrill out of it."
Mark Wahlberg’s F-bombs, Jonah Hill's slam and Zac Efron’s abs were among the highlights of the Nokia Theater ceremony, hosted by Conan O’Brien and featuring performances by Rihanna, Eminem and Ellie Goulding. View gallery