Bob Odenkirk, who will soon be seen back in the role of the storied lawyer and Cinnabon manager at the center of Better Call Saul, has opened up about how prep for a 2021 action hit ultimately helped him survive a heart attack.
Speaking with Howard Stern this week amid promo for his new book Comedy Comedy Comedy Drama, the actor was quick to credit his co-stars and Saul safety supervisor Rosa Estrada for their swift action during last year’s on-set incident, while also emphasizing the impact of the work he did for the Ilya Naishuller-directed Nobody.
“In fact, it saved my life,” Odenkirk told Stern, as seen toward the beginning of the clip above. “And it’s really technically a heart incident, although I would have been dead if somebody hadn’t immediately screamed and gotten someone there to give me CPR. CPR saved my life.”
Odenkirk was then asked about Saul’s on-set team of health officials, with the actor shouting out Rosa for her quick action.
“She also had an AED in her car,” Odenkirk explained. “Those are defibrillators, and we didn’t have any of those on the set. So after about 12 minutes of CPR, she handed me over to some of the other people who knew CPR well and she ran to her car and got the defibrillator. It took three attempts to get me to a rhythm, which is actually a lot.”
Later, around the 1:47 mark, Odenkirk circled back around to Nobody. The actor noted that the film gave him an education in fitness that served him particularly well, both during and immediately after the heart incident.
“One of the things that saved me was I learned how to work out,” Odenkirk said. “And because I was in good shape, you kind of enlarge some of the other veins around your heart if you work out a lot. And I had done that and—as a result—I was told that more blood then was able to go to my heart during CPR because these veins were just a little bit bigger from a lot of working out.”
From there, Odenirk specifically shouted out his Saul collaborators Rhea Seehorn and Patrick Fabian, and offered some parting advice to those watching the clip.
“By the way, take CPR classes,” he said, adding that “you can save lives with them.”
Saul returns to AMC this April to kick off its final season. In a recent Late Show interview, Odenkirk mentioned that the “final scene” of the series was completed two and a half weeks ago. See more below.