'Breaking Bad' and 'Magic Mike': Betsy Brandt's 'parents are relieved that my clothes stay on'

betsy-brandt-ree-carpet-nc-325.jpgShe'd walk though fire to help her extended family, but Marie Schrader is stressed to the max by the violence surrounding her, Betsy Brandt says of her character on AMC's Emmy-winning "Breaking Bad."

"We've laughed about how there really never could be enough security for Marie," the actress, who happily is much more laid back than her TV alter ego, tells Zap2it. "They've had a sniper watching the house to make sure everyone was safe, but Marie would be asking, 'What about SEAL Team 6? Are they available? They should be here!' "

Brandt says she has grown very close to her co-stars while filming the series in New Mexico, so she's trying not to think about how they currently are moving into the home stretch before "Breaking Bad" ends next year. "It's also exciting because I'm having all these meetings about my next project," she adds. "I love working on 'Breaking Bad,' because I love the material and these characters, but I'm also happy that we're not going to just keep on doing the show until people start saying, 'Is that thing still on?' "

When she was younger, Brandt originally dreamed of directing musicals as a career, but she won the lead in a high-school comedy, fell in love with acting and never looked back.

After finishing college, she moved to Seattle and landed some theater, TV and film roles before ultimately relocating to Los Angeles, a city where she once thought she would never live. The jobs just kept coming, most recently a memorable featured role in "Magic Mike."

"My parents are relieved that my clothes stay on," she jokes. "I play the loan officer that Channing Tatum tries to sweet-talk into giving him some money. It was a lot of fun, and a nice little scene."

Hometown: Bay City, Mich.
Family ties: Married, two children
Stage debut: In "Exit the Body" in her junior year of high school
Education: Holds a BFA degree in acting from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; also studied theater with the Moscow Art Theater School at Harvard and the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (now known as the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland) in Glasgow

Previous TV credits: Include "Fairly Legal," "Private Practice," "No Ordinary Family," "Miami Medical," "Boston Legal," "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," "Close to Home," "Medical Investigation," "NCIS," "The Practice," "ER," "Without a Trace," "Judging Amy," "The Guardian" and "JAG" 

Favorite book: "Since I've had my kids, I don't read books the way I used to. The last big, juicy book I read was when I was pregnant with my daughter, and I read 'Anna Karenina.' Last summer I fell in love with a book called 'Half the Sky' by N icholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, his wife. I cried when I read it. He is such an amazing journalist but also seems like a great guy."

Favorite movie: "Probably ' Postcards From the Edge.' As an actor, I would love to play any of the roles in that film. My husband and I ran into Carrie Fisher in a furniture store the other day. She was with, I think, her daughter and her daughter's boyfriend or husband, and they had this adorable French bulldog puppy wearing a little sweatshirt, and the guy was cradling the dog like a newborn baby."

Favorite record: "The first thing that comes to mind is the Pixies album 'Doolittle.' In high school I thought they were just the best band. I still like really old-school music. This album isn't really a classic or anything, but I think it's fun stuff with a really good guitar line. They're not together anymore."

Photo/Video credit: NewsCom