John Cusack takes on his first common TV function in Amazon Prime Video’s “Utopia” as Dr. Kevin Christie, the charismatic, megalomaniacal CEO of a Silicon Valley-esque tech company hiding darkish secrets and techniques. However it’s rumored that Cusack turned down a special morally ambiguous function: that of Walter White in “Breaking Bad.”
The function finally went to Bryan Cranston, who earned six Emmy awards, and Cusack confirms to Selection that he was by no means really supplied the half.
“No, I by no means was, and it was a type of issues the place I heard it so many instances I began to suppose possibly it was true. And I bumped into the creator of ‘Breaking Bad’ [Vince Gilligan], and I mentioned, ‘Am I loopy or did you supply me Walter White? He’s like, ‘No,’” Cusack remembers.
A fan of each “Breaking Bad” and its spinoff “Higher Name Saul,” he says he doesn’t even need to entertain the considered whether or not he would have taken it. “I don’t even need to suppose that as a result of absolutely the good actor received it. It was the right actor for the piece, so like why would you need to take away Bryan Cranston’s efficiency in that? That will be dangerous karma.”
There actually is sufficient dangerous karma to go round in “Utopia,” created by Gillian Flynn and tailored from a 2013 British sci-fi drama of the identical title. It facilities on a bunch of comedian ebook fans who monitor down a uncommon version of a beloved graphic novel that has predicted worldwide epidemics, solely to uncover much more intricate and darker conspiracies.
The present’s dystopian storylines, which embody company manipulation, a burgeoning pandemic and questioning the validity of science, really feel extremely related, says Rainn Wilson. Wilson performs Michael Stearns, a virologist whose stick-to-the-data steadfastness in combating a illness outbreak runs up in opposition to Christie’s (Cusack) slick company swagger.
“[He’s the real scientist] doing the work with the take a look at tubes and the funding, who simply cares in regards to the information and doing issues proper,” says Wilson. “Because of this science has turn out to be so necessary in this point in time — as a result of scientists could be vilified. Science is commonly seen as a liberal conspiracy, and it’s tremendous necessary, to me, to assist our scientists.”
Cusack says the real-life parallels are “surreal.” “After all, no one needs the west to be on fireplace, or be to residing by a pandemic. So, I imply, the present wasn’t made to exploit any of these realities,” he says. “However it’s a dystopian theme, and it’s additionally in regards to the globe is hurtling in the direction of local weather extinction with world warming and nuclear warfare and all these grave existential threats that we face — so there’s no doubting that that was a part of the theme.”
“Utopia” debuts on Amazon Prime Video Sept. 25. Watch interviews with John Cusack and Rainn Wilson above.