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Go-to car guy for TV, movie industry

Mike Faris shows the car from “Breaking Bad” in which character Mike Ehrmantraut was fatally shot by Walter White. (Glen Rosales/For the Albuquerque Journal)

Mike Faris shows the car from “Breaking Bad” in which character Mike Ehrmantraut was fatally shot by Walter White. (Glen Rosales/For the Albuquerque Journal)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The “blood” splatter remains on the passenger seat of the dark navy-blue 1992 Buick Century, lasting evidence of a partnership turned sour.

Fans of Albuquerque’s iconic television show “Breaking Bad” will recognize the vehicle as Mike Ehrmantraut’s car, the one in which he took his last ride before being shot down by Walter White.

The car now sits in Mike Faris Auto Wholesale lot on Fourth Street NW, up for sale since it was returned to the dealership when its lease was up and the show ended.

Faris, owner of the dealership, provided a number of vehicles to “Breaking Bad,” “Better Call Saul,” and countless other movies and TV shows since he first opened in 1995.

His connection with the entertainment industry began more than 10 years ago when a couple of producers contacted him about finding some vehicles.

“They wanted to know if I could get them any type of vehicle for a show,” Faris said. “I was able to find them the vehicles they wanted and my name got out there so now a lot of different industry people call me. Just about every movie that’s come along, we’ve had some kind of involvement.”

Many of the vehicles are older-model pickup trucks used in modern Westerns, and some are for futuristic movies in which the vehicles are modernized.

But one time he did have a completely unusual request.

“It was for a program shot in Northern New Mexico near Peñasco,” Faris recalled. “They badly needed a Bentley.”

Unable to find one locally, he eventually had one shipped in from Los Angeles.

A car junkie since he was little, Faris began rebuilding hot rods and trucks when he was in teens, but as he got older he began working in the family construction business.

“But I’m a firm believer in if you don’t like what you’re doing, do something else,” he said.

So he started up the dealership, relying on contacts he had built up over the years from constantly working on vehicles.

“It’s like Christmas every day,” Faris said. “You never know what you’re going to get day to day. One day it could be a ’72 Mach 1 and the next it could be a Hyundai Sonata.”

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