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Penn Badgley says he was 'so close' to landing Breaking Bad role

Penn Badgley says he was 'so close' to landing Breaking Bad role

The star of You narrowly missed out on a lead role in the AMC smash hit

In the world of film and television, there are many roles that actors will miss out on before they get their big break.

But for Penn Badgley, the role that 'got away' for him is on one of the most iconic shows of the last twenty years.

The star of Netflix's smash hit You has revealed that he came close to securing a lead role in the hit AMC show Breaking Bad.

Penn Badgley is best known for his role as Joe Goldberg on You.
Netflix

Whilst being interviewed on Buzzfeed's The Puppy Interview, the 36-year-old actor reflected on losing out on the role of Jesse Bruce Pinkman to Aaron Paul.

In the series, Pinkman was a student who worked alongside Walter White - played by Bryan Cranston - to produce meth.

Reflecting on the audition process, Badgley said: "One I got so close on was Breaking Bad.

"It was between me and Aaron Paul. We tested. And actually that was the best television script I’d read at that point. That was the one that got away."

Fortunately for Badgley, he was able to secure a big role elsewhere, as he played Dan Humphreys in Gossip Girl, which secured him six Teen Choice Award nominations.

Badgley has since gone into appear in films such as Easy A and The Stepfather, but is best known for his role as the disturbed serial killer Joe Goldberg in Netflix's hit series You.

As for Paul, his role on Breaking Bad secured him multiple accolades, including three Emmy Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Scenes.

Aaron Paul won several awards for his role in Breaking Bad.
AMC

When he reflected on auditioning alongside Badgley in a 2020 interview, Paul said: "Right when [Badgley] walked in, I was like, ‘Oh my God, that guy looks like a meth addict'. In a good way!

"He was just in the role. I was like, ‘This guy is going to steal it from me'. But after the test, it took about two weeks to finally let me know."

In a recent interview, Badgley opened up about his decision to avoid doing intimate scenes on You, out of respect for his wife.

Badgley said: "Fidelity in every relationship, and especially my marriage, is really important to me. It just got to a point where I don’t want to do that.

"Before I took the show, it was a question: Do I have a career if I don’t? Think about every male lead you’ve loved.

"Are they kissing someone? Are they doing a lot more than that?"

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock/AMC