Bryan Cranston Wants To Play Country Music’s Greatest Living Legend In A Biopic

Bryan Cranston would like to play Willie Nelson in a biopic.

By Robert Scucci | Updated

By now, it’s no mystery that Bryan Cranston is a man of many faces, and in a recent interview from The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, the man behind Walter White himself states that he’d love to play Willie Nelson in a biopic if given the opportunity. When asked why Willie Nelson was on the top of his short list of musicians he’d like to portray on the silver screen, Cranston said that he thinks his resemblance to the country singer is uncanny, stating that they’re both old and craggy. Other candidates that the A Life in Parts author would be willing to take stab at included Canadian singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot and the legendary comic book writer Stan Lee.

The subject of rock biopics came about after Cranston briefly described his promotional pop-ups for Dos Hombres brand Mezcal with former Breaking Bad costar Aaron Paul as being the closest thing to a rock tour that his fantasy will allow him. For those who don’t know, Walter White and Jesse Pinkman are no longer in the meth business and have moved on to liquor—what’s more, their reach goes far beyond Albuquerque, New Mexico these days. As the interview progresses, Bryan Cranston even throws on a signature Willie Nelson bandana and pigtail getup just for fun, and we’d be lying if we didn’t say that we thought we were seeing double.

Though we likely won’t see a Bryan Cranston portrayal of Willie Nelson any time soon, it’s fun to think about, considering the range the Seinfeld alum has. In fact, Vince Gilligan once described Cranston’s Walter White character as Hal Wilkerson (Malcolm in the Middle) transforming into Scarface, and he’s not wrong. While method acting has become increasingly popular in Hollywood in recent decades, it’s easy to see why Cranston took the craft to a whole new level during his tenure with Breaking Bad.

Willie Nelson
Bryan Cranston as Walter White in Breaking Bad

Aside from the striking resemblance that Bryan Cranston has with Willie Nelson, their career trajectories are also similar in a way. Cranston’s early work showed him cutting his teeth and developing his acting chops by taking minor roles in advertisements before landing larger roles in shows like Seinfeld, The X-Files (directed by Vince Gilligan), and eventually Malcolm in the Middle before securing his most iconic role as Walter White in Breaking Bad. Willie Nelson started his career as a radio disk jockey who frequently performed open mics before seeing mainstream success in the outlaw country genre that propelled him into superstardom.

It’s always reassuring to know that legends aren’t formed overnight and that both Bryan Cranston and Willie Nelson put in a relentless amount of work to become household names in their own right. Many of us have our own dreams to make it big and seeing stars of their caliber approach their crafts with such enthusiasm while remaining so humble is a reminder that if you work hard and be kind, amazing things will happen to you.

Though there isn’t currently a Willie Nelson biopic in the works, we can only hope that Bryan Cranston and Fallon spoke it into existence because it’s definitely a film we’d love to see. If it happens, we’re not sure if Willie Nelson would let Walter White anywhere near his beloved guitar, Trigger, but we’re sure a replica could be made for such an occasion.