Ray Richmond is contributing to Deadline’s Emmy coverage.

UPDATE: Emmy-nominated AMC/Sony TV drama Breaking Bad won’t premiere fresh episodes for its fourth season until July 2011. That’s more than a full year after the conclusion of Season Three last June. “I think what AMC is thinking here is there will be less competition for us — particularly from the broadcast networks — if we launch our season during the summer than if we come back again like we did this time in March,” lead actor Bryan Cranston tells me. As a result, the show won’t be eligible for a third best drama series Emmy nomination next year. That also affects Cranston, who received his third consecutive Emmy nomination last month. (He won 2 years running and might three-peat on August 29). To bridge the 13-month gap between seasons, the plan is to produce short interstitial mini-episodes of 3-to-4 minutes apiece early next year after the show goes back in production in January. They’ll be posted on AMC’s website. “The idea is to keep people aware and interested in the show during the long time away,” Cranston says to me. “But I, for one, am eager to make these little interstitials important. I don’t want them to be simply filler or recap, but something that actually moves the storyline forward. If we’re going to do it, it ought to be a real part of the larger show.”

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