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‘Breaking Bad’s‘ Cranston returns to director’s chair

Bryan Cranston will sit in the director’s chair one last time for his AMC drama “Breaking Bad.”

In an Associated Press interview Tuesday, Mr. Cranston said he will direct the ninth episode of the show’s fifth and final season, which begins Sunday and will air split over two summers. That break in filming gives the actor time to put on his directing hat before the season’s second half airs in 2013.

“As an actor on the show, it’s really, really difficult - if you’re in it a lot, obviously - to be able to prep so I take opportunities before we’re actually in production shooting,” he said.

Mr. Cranston, who won three back-to-back Emmys for “Breaking Bad,” also directed the first episodes of seasons one and three of the dark series about chemistry teacher Walter White, who turns to cooking meth to help support his family after he’s diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. The actor also directed an episode of ABC’s “Modern Family” and seven episodes of his former Fox comedy “Malcolm in the Middle.”

Mr. Cranston said in season five viewers will see an increasingly remorseless Walter White complete his journey from a hapless high school teacher to a full-fledged drug lord. “He’s feeling very basic things: control, power, dominance. Those things and those ugly factors have come to the surface.”

Mr. Cranston said he would be willing to star in a “Breaking Bad” movie if there is one - but at this point, the actors don’t know if their characters will be around to make a film because only creator Vince Gilligan and his writing team know how the series ends.