When “Breaking Bad” ended, fans everywhere plunged headfirst into the five stages of grief -- denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance -- and while most people have moved on to acceptance at this point, DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg is pretty clearly still stuck in the bargaining phase.
According to Variety, Katzenberg recently offered Sony and “Breaking Bad” creator Vince Gilligan $75 million ($25 million per episode) to create an additional three episodes of “Breaking Bad,” exploring what happened immediately after the finale.
When Katzenberg pitched the idea six weeks ago, he says, he had no idea how that show would end and is admittedly unsure if the concept could work anymore. Still, if done right, Katzenberg thinks his “Breaking Bad” continuation could make everyone involved very rich.
“I had this crazy idea. I was nuts for the show. I had no idea where this season was going,” Katzenberg said during a lecture at Mipco in Cannes, France. “The last series cost about $3.5 million an episode. So they would make more profit from these three shows than they made from five years of the entire series.”
Katzenberg’s $75 million offer came with a catch, however: The last three “Breaking Bad” episodes wouldn’t air on AMC. Instead, they would air exclusively online, in six-minute segments spread out across 30 days. He says he would have charged viewers between 50 and 99 cents per episode, creating what he calls “the greatest pay-per-view television event for scripted programming anybody’s ever done.”
Though it seems unlikely (impossible actually) that Katzenberg’s “Breaking Bad” sequel will get any traction, he still believes that his micro-drama concept has legs for another series of short-form Web content.
“I share the story with you only to tell you that I have the courage of my convictions in this. I just think that there is a whole new platform for (short form) entertainment … and the higher the quality of the stuff that fills it, the higher people will be paid for the work that they are doing there,” he said.