Sony Pictures and the City of Albuquerque unveiled the official bronze statues of Breaking Bad characters Walter White and Jesse Pinkman that have been gifted to The Duke City by series creator Vince Gilligan. Photos from the ceremony where the statues were revealed have been released online courtesy of Sony Pictures entertainment. The sculptures were created by artist Trevor Grove and cast by American Fine Arts Foundry, with Gilligan himself commissioning their creation back in 2019. Gilligan elected to create and give the statues to Albuquerque as a thank you for being the home of Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul's cast and crew for over a decade.
Gilligan got the idea after seeing a tiny wax statue created by Grove. "It was so amazing that it just got me to thinking: What if Trevor could sculpt a life-sized version of Walter White in bronze, a medium new to him, and what if he could toss in Jesse Pinkman to boot, and then we donate to the two statues to the city of Albuquerque as a thank-you for your hospitality?" Gilligan said at the unveiling ceremony.
Addressing that fact that a pair of "fictional meth dealers" were being honored by the city, Gilligan said he understood anyone that wasn't keen on the two statues. "In all seriousness, some folks are going to say, 'Wow, just what our city needed.' I get that," Gilligan added. "But let me tell you what I see when I look at these two works of art: I see two of the finest actors America has ever produced. I see them in character as two larger-than-life tragic figures, cautionary tales, world-famous ones at that."
According to the Albuquerque Journal, The Mayor's Office of the city revealed to KOAT news that upwards of $385 million in economic impact came to New Mexico as a result of filming on Breaking Bad and spinoff/prequel series Better Call Saul.
"We're humbled by this," Cranston, who won four Primetime Emmy Awards for his performance as Walter White, said at the event. "We're delighted, slightly embarrassed to have statues of you. And when they first came to me and said we want to make two statues of you, and I thought, 'Wow, fantastic, Heisenberg and Walter White!' I'm really grateful....There's no preparation for saying you're getting a statue. I'm just rather grateful that it's indoors so that the pigeons won't crap on our heads."
Cranston and Paul will reprise their Breaking Bad roles in an upcoming episode of Better Call Saul. The statues of their characters can be seen at the Albuquerque Convention Center0comments