A ‘Better Call Saul’ Actor Nearly Overdosed On Cinnabons
This week’s episode of Better Call Saul was surprisingly set entirely within the show’s future (colorless) timeline, where Jimmy/Saul/Gene Takovic is now a fugitive from the law, working as the manager of a Cinnabon at a shopping mall in Omaha following the events of Breaking Bad. So basically, Saul just traded helping to peddle one harmful and addictive product for another.
The show (titled “Nippy”) was particularly Cinnabon-heavy, involving a scheme in which “Gene” scams the mall’s security guards, distracting them with a never ending supply of free Cinnabons. This included an extended montage that required actor Jim O’Heir (AKA Jerry/Larry/Gary/Terry from Parks and Recreation) to devour enough Cinnabons to suffocate a Kaiju.
Presumably since the show didn’t have a “CGI Cinnabon” budget, the actor was forced to eat the real thing. According to a recent interview, O’Heir claims that he was even sent Cinnabons to rehearse with, so he could properly cut them with a knife and fork like a real gentleman and “live every bite.” And when they were shooting the episode, the crew brought in a whopping 100 Cinnabons a day! Which, considering that most people fall into a sugar coma roughly half-way through eating just one Cinnabon, sure seems like a lot.
While O’Heir had a “spit-bucket” for some takes (like at any traditional, upscale Cinnabon tasting) others required actually eating the Cinnabon. At one point he was even approached by the on-set medic who wanted to check him out, worried that his blood-sugar levels could be “getting out of hand.”
Thankfully, he was fine, but in retrospect, this show has a pretty weird relationship with Cinnabon; on the one hand, this episode was basically an extended commercial for the franchise. But on the other, the only reason why Gene works at a Cinnabon is seemingly because it was the most hopelessly depressing job the writers could think of for what was, originally, just a throwaway line on Breaking Bad.
But then Cinnabon embraced the reference on social media and, despite the fact that apparently no money has been exchanged between the two parties, when the spin-off came along Cinnabon even featured promotional tie-ins for Better Call Saul, including putting up Saul Goodman cardboard cut-outs in their stores.
Because nothing sells gooey mounds of sugary dough better than the suggestion that it could have been baked by a former consigliere to a notorious meth kingpin.
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