Bob Odenkirk, the star of the television series Better Call Saul, was said to be in stable condition on Wednesday evening after suffering what his representatives said was "a heart-related incident."
Odenkirk (58), who plays the underhanded title character on Better Call Saul, was hospitalised on Tuesday after he collapsed on the set of that show, which is filmed in and around Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Representatives for Odenkirk said in a statement, “We can confirm Bob is in stable condition after experiencing a heart-related incident. He and his family would like to express gratitude for the incredible doctors and nurses looking after him, as well as his cast, crew and producers who have stayed by his side. The Odenkirks would also like to thank everyone for the outpouring of well wishes and ask for their privacy at this time as Bob works on his recovery.”
Odenkirk had previously written for Saturday Night Live and Late Night With Conan O'Brien and co-created the HBO sketch series Mr Show With Bob and David before he came to wider renown as the comically unscrupulous lawyer Saul Goodman on Breaking Bad.
After Breaking Bad concluded in 2013, Odenkirk’s character was given his own prequel series, Better Call Saul, which charted his character’s descent from a good-hearted but corner-cutting lawyer named Jimmy McGill to his sleazier Saul Goodman persona.
On Better Call Saul, which made its debut in 2015, Odenkirk received four Emmy Award nominations for lead actor in a drama series. The sixth and final season of Better Call Saul was expected to make its debut next year.
As news of Odenkirk’s hospitalisation spread, there was an outpouring of support for him on social media. David Cross – who co-created and co-starred in Mr Show with him – wrote on Twitter: “I will share what I know when I can but Bob is one of the strongest people I know both physically and spiritually. He WILL get through this.”
And Bryan Cranston, the star of Breaking Bad, wrote on Instagram that he had been "anxious all morning" about the news of Odenkirk's collapse.
“He is in the hospital in Albuquerque and receiving the medical attention he needs but his condition is not known to the public as yet,” he wrote. “Please take a moment in your day today to think about him and send positive thoughts and prayers his way, thank you.”
This past spring, Odenkirk starred in the revenge thriller Nobody, which required him to undergo several months of physical training in preparation for the lead role.
Discussing his exercise regimen for Nobody, Odenkirk said in an interview with The New York Times that he had never previously attempted anything more strenuous than cardio. “And I had never hurt my back, my knees,” Odenkirk said.
“Everything’s good enough, it works. It stressed me to drive to the training facility – an hour and 10 minutes, some days more – in LA traffic, and think, ‘You’re training for a movie that’s never going to happen, what is wrong with you? What kind of midlife crisis are you going through?’”
He continued, “But I also thought, ‘If the movie doesn’t happen, well, I’ll be in shape. And I’ll have learned something about my body.’”
Odenkirk won Emmy Awards as a member of the writing staffs at Saturday Night Live and The Ben Stiller Show. He also directed the comedy films Let's Go to Prison and The Brothers Solomon, and he acted in TV shows Fargo and in films like the 2019 adaptation of Little Women, which also starred Saoirse Ronan. – New York Times