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Paul was on the scene early and yelled, “Yeah, bitch!” as he drove by in a black car. Paul helped organize the screening, which raised $1.8 million for charity and was attended by show creator Vince Gilligan and most of the cast, including Bryan Cranston.
Though doors didn’t open until 6:30 p.m. Pacific time, fans dressed up in hazmat suits and full Heisenberg regalia had already lined up at the gate by 3 p.m. Some were drinking from beakers, while one fan was spotted handing out “free meth” from a Los Pollos Hermanos bucket. One young woman was dressed up as the infamous pink teddy bear from season two and carried a sign reading “Have an A1 day.”
As guests arrived, music fitting the Breaking Bad theme was played, including Roxy Music’s “Love Is the Drug” and Huey Lewis and the News’ “I Want a New Drug.”
Just before 7 p.m., Paul officially arrived on the scene in a Vamanos Pest jumpsuit.
Around 8:30 p.m., some of the cast — including R.J. Mitte — popped out of a black car wearing hazmat suits.
Cranston opened up the discussion between the screening of the pilot and the finale: “Let’s cook! I noticed Aaron is able to talk in front of people now!”
Of the series he added: “People ask, ‘How do you feel?’ Now that it’s over, we can start to feel. … Do you know what I mean?”
Cranston, Paul and Gilligan all praised one another, even embracing in a group hug onstage.
Said Cranston of Paul: “He understands the blessings in life. As good as you are an actor, you are an even better person.”
Paul, meanwhile, thanked Gilligan “for giving me a career. We are so thankful you exist.”
Among those spotted in the crowd were Ewan McGregor, Netflix’s Ted Sarandos, “Weird Al” Yankovic, Questlove, Bill Hader, Pawn Stars’ Rick Harrison, Marilyn Manson and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia‘s Glenn Howerton, Kaitlin Olson and husband Rob McElhenney.
In the VIP food section, guests were treated to blue donuts and custom cocktails by Bushmills with names like “Tread Lightly” and “A Trip to Belize.”
Tickets for the finale screening sold out in about one minute when they went on sale Sept. 4. Paul organized a contest allowing fans the opportunity to be his guest to the finale, with proceeds benefiting his wife Lauren’s anti-bullying nonprofit, The Kind Campaign.
Said Cranston onstage of the money raised, making a tongue-in-cheek reference to one of the most famous quotes from the show’s final eight episodes: “With $1.8 million raised tonight, you can take a helluva trip to Belize! Let’s all go to Belize!”
Jimmy Kimmel moderated a panel after the screening, during which Gilligan revealed that the title of the finale, “Felina,” was an anagram of the word “finale.” In the episode, Walt died in the final moments.
Of that decision to have the character not survive, Gilligan revealed: “We considered every possible ending … including Walt being the only one left alive.”
Added Cranston of his character: “He finally accepted who he really was. He was hiding the guise of doing it for his family the whole time. The show starts on his 50th and ends on his 52nd birthday. What a way to go!”
Meanwhile, co-star Jonathan Banks had a warning for anyone who wasn’t happy with the ending. “If anyone bitches and moans about how the show ended, tell them to come see me,” he quipped.
Of Walt’s decision to poison Lydia with ricin, Kimmel asked: “Will this be a good thing or a bad thing for Stevia tomorrow?”
Replied Cranston: “Sell your stock!”
The event’s afterparty was held in the cemetery’s masonic lodge. Ron Jeremy, Bill Hader and indie band Vampire Weekend were among the guests. The Breaking Bad cast were all in attendance at the bash, but Gilligan had slipped out.
The cast takes the stage, with Aaron Paul at the microphone.
From left: Vince Gilligan, Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul onstage.
Vince Gilligan, Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul embrace.
Gilligan and the cast took part in a panel moderated by Jimmy Kimmel.
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