TORONTO, Canada – Bryan Cranston stars in the new biopic “Trumbo” as 1940s blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo. The "Breaking Bad" star said he didn't know much about the man he would play when he took the role.
“I didn’t know all that much other than the general knowledge of the blacklist, and the House Un-American Activities Committee and later the Senate hearings with Joseph McCarthy and things like that, and I had heard the name Dalton Trumbo, and I knew he wrote 'Roman Holiday' and 'Spartacus,' but I didn’t really know the extent of it," Cranston told FOX411 at the Toronto International Film Festival. "But he was a playwright as well and a novelist. Very prolific. Very opinionated. And he was a member of the American Communist Party.”
The more the actor learned about Trumbo, the more interested he got.
“The whole point of this movie that fascinated me is that, as Trumbo says in the film, ‘We both have the right to be wrong,'" Cranston said. "That we may have a difference of opinion, but your opinion doesn’t threaten me, and my opinion shouldn’t threaten you. That we should defend each other’s right to be able to voice that opinion.”
Cranston thinks Trumbo's world has som modern parallels.
“Well I think you could take a look at the carte blanche that the NSA wants to have, for instance, with wiretapping and that sort of thing, and my belief, and what Dalton Trumbo would believe is that no, it shouldn’t be carte blanche," Cranston said.
But the actor also understands the threats today are very different from 50, 60 years ago.
"The world has changed, absolutely. Our defense needs to be paramount. So the conversation should still be had of personal freedoms and rights," he said. "Now, it varies under different circumstances, but the conversation should never be withdrawn. That should always be included in any decision making that is done by the government at all times. And that’s the point really.”
“Trumbo” hits theaters November 6.