At the Academy New Member reception in 2012, Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston shared his advice to aspiring actors. Applicable to anyone who creates work that is judged by others, Cranston’s words of wisdom are profoundly simple and incredibly liberating:
“Well, the best advice for fellow actors is this: Know what your job is. About 18 years ago I realized I was going into auditions to try to get a job. And that simply wasn’t what I was supposed to be doing.
An actor is supposed to create a compelling, interesting character that serves the text and presents it in the environment where your audition happens. And then you walk away and that’s it. Everything else is out of your control.So don’t even think of it, don’t focus on that. You’re not going there to get a job. You’re going there to present what you do. You act, and there it is. And walk away. And there’s power in that and there’s confidence in that. And it’s also saying, 'I can only do so much.'
The decision of who might get a job is so out of your control that really—when you analyze it—it makes no sense to hold on to that. That, to me was a breakthrough, and once I adapted that philosophy, I never looked back. And I’ve never been busier in my life.”See the YouTube video here.