A Steamy Kiss Inspired Bryan Cranston to Start Acting: ‘Open Mouth, Tongue, Hands Everywhere — It Was Very Exciting’

Bryan Cranston is well known for being the star of one of the seminal TV shows of the 2000s — Breaking Bad. But there was a time in Cranston’s life when he didn’t seem to be too interested in acting. There was a singular moment during one of his acting classes that changed all of that. Here’s the story of the one kiss Cranston had that made him want to pursue acting full time.  

Bryan Cranston had a tough upbringing

Bryan Cranston in front of a white background
Bryan Cranston | Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

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Cranston may have had a lot of success in his career later in life, but he had anything but a storybook beginning. According to an interview with The Guardian, the legendary actor had a difficult time as a youth.

The son of two actors, Cranston grew up in suburban LA. Both his parents struggled to achieve success as performers. Sadly, the family underwent a lot of turmoil during Cranston’s formative years. His mother battled alcoholism. His parents split, and his father abandoned the family, not reconnecting with Cranston until many years later.

Cranston was able to turn things around and ascend to superstardom as an actor. Of course, he experimented with other fields before he settled on a career in the arts. 

Bryan Cranston nearly became a police officer 

In everyone’s life, they think about what might have been if they made different choices. In the case of Cranston, he nearly went into an entirely different line of work.

Before he made the wise choice to become an actor, Cranston was looking for a stable, reliable profession earlier in his life. With this in mind, he enrolled in the LA Police Department’s youth training program in the hopes of one day becoming a police officer. 

Cranston didn’t just enroll in the training program, however. He thrived in it. He graduated at the top of his class. 

It was a great day for him in acting class that made him want to pursue a new line of work, however. 

The kiss that changed Bryan Cranston’s life

Cranston enrolled in an acting class on a lark. At the time it seemed like nothing but a spontaneous way to pass the time, but the experience changed Cranston’s life. 

During one class, he was reading across from another classmate of his. Amidst their scene work, the instructor of the class pushed Cranston to kiss her.

As Cranston tells it, he sheepishly asked permission to do the deed: 

“I asked the teacher: ‘Should we kiss, or just pretend?’ He was disgusted by my question. So I thought, OK, I hope she’s not offended, but I’m really gonna kiss her. And it starts – and before I can even begin, she is on me. Open mouth, tongue, hands everywhere. It’s very exciting.”

The kiss knocked Cranston’s socks off, prompting him to ask her out following the class. She turned him down, but Cranston was nonetheless hooked on his future trade. He realized that she had been acting and it made him realize how special this job was. Plus, he realized he’d get to kiss beautiful girls as part of his work. 

What would have happened had Cranston not experienced such a magical kiss? Well, his life certainly would have been a lot different. He likely wouldn’t have earned the massive fortune he’s amassed as a successful actor. The world would have been robbed of one of the greatest acting performances in TV history. Cranston’s role as Walter White on Breaking Bad was a gamechanger for TV drama. 

The bottom line? Breaking Bad fans and Cranston himself are lucky he experienced that kiss.