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Bryan Cranston's little known gesture for TV son who wanted to direct Malcolm in the Middle episode

Bryan Cranston's little known gesture for TV son who wanted to direct Malcolm in the Middle episode

The actor got his chance to direct in the final series of the show

Malcolm in the Middle actor Christopher Masterson has opened up about one of the kind gestures conducted by his on-screen dad, played by Bryan Cranston.

Masterson starred in the popular comedy for its entire six-year run, playing the oldest child, Francis, who got sent off to military school as a result of his bad behaviour.

He went on to appear in titles such as Beneath the Leaves and I'd Like To Be Alone Now, but has also earned credits as a producer and, on one occasion, as a director.

The latter opportunity came towards the end of his time portraying Francis in the final series of Malcolm in the Middle, which aired in 2006.

He recalled the events during an interview with the Kevin Pollak Chat Show, where he confirmed that he directed the episode titled 'Hal Grieves' and said the situation came about thanks to Cranston.

Masterson played Francis in the series.
20th Century Fox

"Bryan Cranston was directing episodes of the show throughout the process, and he was a great director, he is a great director, and I had gone to film school before we started shooting and I had wanted to be a director at some point," Masterson explained.

The actor recalled having conversations with Cranston about his desire, but came off quite casual about his plans as he said he'd go back to directing at 'some point' in his career, because that had been his 'favourite thing'.

His only experience with directing was making shorts, but Cranston constantly brought Masterson's attention back to the job role by asking him every season where he was up to with his plans to direct.

He recalled how the Breaking Bad actor encouraged him to try and land a job as director on Malcolm in the Middle, but having previously only worked with a budget of '$18' (£15), the prospect seemed pretty daunting.

Bryan Cranston played the boys' dad in the series.
20th Century Fox

"He kept pushing me and it just seemed so daunting [but] finally I started shadowing some of our directors and watching him and some of the others work... and I still didn't know if I wanted to do it," Masterson recalled.

That changed, however, when Cranston stopped him in the hallway one day and laid out a plan for how he could get the job.

"I went and did it," Masterson said. "I had a meeting with Linwood who was the creator and said, 'look I'm not brand new to this, I've directed a bunch of stuff but no one's ever seen it... and I'd really like to do an episode'.

"That process, getting to do it on that scale... it was mindblowing," he said.

Masterson admitted he 'didn't sleep the entire time', but was 'truly buzzing' with the experience that Cranston had helped him land.

Featured Image Credit: Disney+ / kevinpollakschatshow / YouTube

Topics: TV and Film, Celebrity