“Breaking Bad” star Bryan Cranston revealed Thursday that he had recovered from the coronavirus and shared a video of himself donating plasma at a Los Angeles blood bank.
Cranston, 64, a five-time Emmy winner and two-time Tony Award winner, discussed the diagnosis in an Instagram post. He said that he was lucky and that his symptoms had been very mild.
The actor, who is best known for his role in the vaunted AMC series “Breaking Bad” as Walter White, a high school chemistry teacher who resorts to making and selling crystal meth to pay for his cancer treatment, said he had been vigilant but had still gotten the virus.
“I was pretty strict in adhering to the protocols and still … I contracted the virus,” Cranston wrote. “Yep. it sounds daunting now that over 150,000 Americans are dead because of it.”
In the video, Cranston appeared in a surgical mask at the UCLA Blood & Platelet Center, where he showed a phlebotomist drawing blood from his right arm and harvesting the plasma, the light yellow liquid part of the blood that is used in a procedure known as convalescent blood plasma to treat some patients with the virus.
The actor called plasma “liquid gold” and said it could be rich in antibodies produced in response to the virus and could benefit others in their recovery from COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus.
Cranston watched the black-and-white film “A Face in the Crowd,” starring Andy Griffith and Patricia Neal, as his blood was being drawn. He kidded with the phlebotomist about whether he had good aim.
Last year, Cranston won the Tony for best leading actor in a play for his role in “Network,” in which he portrayed a newscaster.
In his Instagram post, the actor said he understood the restlessness and frustration of people having to practice social distancing. But Cranston, who was also nominated for an Oscar for the movie “Trumbo,” warned his followers not to become complacent.
“I count my blessings and urge you to keep wearing the damn mask, keep washing your hands, and stay socially distant,” he wrote. “We can prevail — but ONLY if we follow the rules together.”