Tonight, ‘24’ fans will finally be reunited with the rough, tough, no-nonsense badass Jack Bauer, when FOX’s 12-episode event series ‘24: Live Another Day’ premieres with two one-hour episodes.
It’s no secret that Jack Bauer, played by the talented Kiefer Sutherland, makes someone who is no stranger to torture (whether he’s on the receiving or giving end) and fighting the bad guys look good. After four years, Jack is back, but now the government is hunting him down and not in the U.S., but rather in London. But don’t worry, because that’s not going to prevent him from saving the day, especially when it comes to those he loves (aka Chloe O’Brian, played by Mary Lynn Rajskub, and, of course, his country).
Last week, TVRage was lucky enough to sit in on a conference call with Sutherland where he talked about ‘24.’ Before getting to the juicy details, let’s just say the first call (yes, there were two conference calls, thanks to technology not being tech-friendly) started out with Sutherland experiencing technical difficulties with his phone. Where was Chloe when we needed her?!
RELATED NEWS: ‘24: Live Another Day’ Full Trailer Released
During the second call, where we finally had a chance to pick Sutherland’s brain, the actor joked about trouble with his cell phone and how he always hears that Jack’s “cell phone never seems to fail,” but as he said, “trust me, my own cell phone, Kiefer Sutherland’s cell phone, didn’t work yesterday at all.”
All joking aside, Sutherland is extremely excited for ‘24’ fans, and others, to get back into the series that ended four short years ago. He was quite surprised ‘24’ was coming back to the small screen -- it was “the last thing” he thought would happened, as most thought it would first be turned into a film.
Whether it be a movie or a TV show, Jack Bauer fans can’t wait to see him back in action. Some might assume Sutherland found it easy jumping back into the character that he played for eight years, but as he revealed, “My first instinct is to tell you that it’s really innate in me now at this time. But it wasn’t true. I think one of the things that I had to fight the most was that when you put something away, like we had ‘24’ and the eight seasons of ‘24,’ and we put it away and we were done with it and kind of benchmarked it, and this now has become a part of our life, it’s not living anymore, you get very precious with it.
“And I think the most difficult thing for me in the six months leading up to shooting was kind of dealing with my nerves and realizing we’re opening this up again and trying not to be scared of it and actually view this as a real opportunity to try and make the best 12 episodes.”
As stated above, Sutherland “was quite nervous” about approaching the character and the show and he even found himself checking that the acting felt right with director Jon Cassar. Eventually, Sutherland overcame his nerves and found his place, which is all thanks to a certain scene that we won’t spoil for you. Sutherland described it as follows, “...I burst into this IT tech room and I have this scene … and there was something about the vocal dynamic, he comes in really hot in that scene and then kind of goes down to really kind of almost a whispering tone, and that was something that triggered something for me that just kind of made me feel really comfortable and at ease. And then we kind of took off from there.”
Basically, Jack was back! So, with Jack now considered a fugitive, and with the passing of several years, can fans expect the same Jack they know and love, or will a new Jack be present this time around?
According to Sutherland “...there are two things that are very different structurally from this season to any other, and one of them is that Jack Bauer usually started off every season working within the infrastructure of whatever government agency he’s a part of, or in line with the president of the United States. And then that might shift, but he certainly always starts there. This season not only is he not working within the context of that infrastructure, that he’s actually working on his own, but the people that he’s trying to help are actually hunting him and they’re trying to either kill him or arrest him. And so that’s a really interesting dynamic.”
Similar to this season, the character is also different, “On a much more kind of intimate character level, Jack Bauer is just, he’s harder and I think angrier than he’s ever been. He’s had to hide in Eastern Europe for four years, he’s been estranged from his daughter and his grandchildren, he has not been able to go back to the country that he feels he served, and that kind of isolation has made him really hard. And that is something that you’ll see very early on in the first episode in the dramatically dynamic shift between the relationship between he and Chloe, and that’s explained very early on.”
RELATED NEWS: ‘Game of Thrones’ Alum Michelle Fairley Replaces Judy Davis in ‘24: Live Another Day’
Like Sutherland just explained above, there’s also something different when it comes to the villains this time round. As we all know, ‘24’ wouldn’t be the same without Jack coming face to face with adversaries, but when it comes to the bad guys, there just might be more than one big bad. “...what’s interesting again this year is it’s multi-layered. It usually used to be one person. And this year all I can tell you is it will surprise you, I think, and it’s multi-layered. It’s more than one person.”
Fans are ecstatic the show is returning, and the 12 episodes will most likely go by quickly (and probably too fast), so that brings up the question, “Can we expect even more Jack Bauer and ‘24,’ in terms of TV or a movie?”
“I would never say no, because it’s just too easy for something to happen,” Sutherland noted. “But it is not something that I’m thinking about and it’s not something that I think Howard [Gordon, executive producer] or anybody else is thinking about.”
He added, “I feel very, very strong about the first eight episodes that we have completed. Now, we just need to really bring it home. And then we’ll see where we’re at. I would never want to say, “No, I absolutely will not do that,” because I don’t know.”
‘24: Live Another Day’ two-episode premiere starts tonight at 8/7c on FOX.