Bryan Cranston was driven to be a “good, respected, working actor”–and he’s achieved this goal with flying colors. Not only has he been a working actor for 30 years, but he’s won several Emmy awards to boot. Cranston is best known for playing the calloused chemistry teacher, Walter White in AMC’s drama series Breaking Bad, as well as Hal, the father on the Fox comedy series Malcolm in the Middle.

In this 2013 AreUaStar video, Bryan shares acting advice based on what he learned while on his quest to maintain a career as a working actor. He advises, “My easy answer is: ACT. Find a place to act.” Cranston himself got his start at the Granada Theatre in the San Fernando Valley in California after college. As he was studying police science he was required to take elective courses, so decided to take acting and stagecraft classes. Mind you, both his parents were actors, and they didn’t want Bryan to follow them into the business. This means Bryan didn’t pursue acting seriously until he reached his late twenties. 

Another suggestion he discusses is for actors to, “Go do your job, and go home.” No matter how desperate you are for work, he asserts, “No casting director will ever say, ‘That person really needs a job, let’s hire them.'” So he counsels actors to be ready to give their best interpretation of the material, and be satisfied they tried their best. Also, be ready and willing to keep working other side jobs–even for years–to sustain the ability to audition. For instance, Bryan’s other jobs included being an ordained, part-time minister. As he previously said, “I learned long ago to focus on things you can control, and don’t even pay attention to things you don’t.”

Cranston encourages actors to keep the faith that “it’s going to work for you.” Sometimes a lost opportunity can be a blessing in disguise. When disappointments arise, Bryan advises actors to keep the mind frame, “Maybe there’s something that’s really right for me right around the corner.” Indeed, Cranston once demonstrated his faith in achieving his career goals when he said, “I’ve got a whole mantel just waiting for those awards to come, a whole big mantel. There’s just so much available space. I’ve got the light fixtures hanging from the ceiling, all ready to shine on them. I dust it off every day.”

Hoping his words inspire you in your quest to become the actor you most aspire to be!