One of the more peculiar entertainment stories of 2017 was the news that Kevin James' CBS sitcom Kevin Can Wait was going to remove cast member Erinn Hayes ahead of its second season. Hayes's character was killed off and was, for all intents and purposes, replaced by James's former King of Queens costar Leah Remini.
James would later explain that the "show needed a little emotional weight to drive [his] character." Hayes, meanwhile, would speak most loudly through some very noticeable "likes" on social media. Among the people who were paying attention to the news was Bryan Cranston.
As he was getting ready to say goodbye to his celebrated Breaking Bad character Walter White in 2013, Cranston signed a first-look deal with Sony Pictures Television. Two of the shows he developed, Sneaky Pete and Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams have found a home on Amazon Prime and a third joins their ranks this March — The Dangerous Book for Boys. Hayes was one of the first people Cranston reached out to join his family-friendly fare.
"I think, truly, it was a day or two after I heard [she was leaving Kevin Can Wait] I sent her a personal note," Cranston told Yahoo Entertainment. "[I said], 'Take a look, read this. It's a beautiful piece.' It's for families and I know she's a mom in real life. 'I think you'll just kill this.' And she read it and she really liked it and we talked. It was probably the easiest casting that we had."
"We were thinking of the right sensibility of the mom," Cranston continued. "She has to be a good actor, she has to have comic timing, but have the deep well of emotions that this character needed. She is the glue that holds this family together. She's the emotional center."