We caught up with Kiefer Sutherland last night at the New York premiere of 24’s eighth season. The star (and executive producer) gave some hints about the NY-set season 8 (premiering Sunday) and the possible 24 feature film. He also addressed (pun intended) his Wednesday night appearance on David Letterman.
On changes in Jack: In Season 8, we’ll see a more hopeful Jack Bauer than we’ve seen before, as the prospect of starting a family again (SPOILER ALERT: Jack’s a Grandpa now!) makes him initially averse to diving back into the world of CTU-style intrigue. “In Seasons 1 through 7, Jack Bauer runs into the burning building. In this season, he’s trying desperately to stay away from the burning building.”
On that dress: Yes, he feels humiliated. If he’d won the bet, his friend would have had to wear a dress to his eight-year-old son’s baseball game. Which, in his opinion, is much worse than being humiliated on national TV.
On the future of 24: He wants a ninth season, and he’s also thinking about the movie:
“What excites me about the idea of doing the 24 film is that it would be a two-hour representation of a 24-hour day, so we would not be restricted by the time limits of going from 6th Avenue to 10th Avenue in three minutes. As you watch this season, in this amazing 24-hour period, New York is functioning perfectly. Unless of course we run into a traffic jam, and then it’s not.
“If we did a film, it would be very feasible to get from Eastern Europe to England in the course of a 24-hour period. Planes, trains, automobiles, things that we’ve never been able to do before. Any time you change the physical dynamic of where we’re shooting, I think it becomes that much more interesting to the audience.
“I’ve always felt that [the movie and the TV show] can both co-exist. I actually tried to convince a few people of this. In a media world that is changing unbelievably fast, a television series can either act as a great trailer for a film, or a film can act as a great trailer for a television series. And I think the first person who actually does that is going to change the way television interacts with feature films.
“I think the resistance to it is because, in my father’s generation, if you did films, you didn’t even think about television. That was a death knell. And if you did television, you wouldn’t be allowed to do films. That was when we had three networks. We have six hundred now, and if I want to see Paul Newman in a movie, I don’t have to go out. And so the game has changed. And I think we’re going to have to adjust with it.
“I love doing the series. The film would be different. I would love that opportunity, and so, we’ll have to see what happens with the series.”
For more coverage of 24, come back to EW.com on Sunday for interviews with the show’s supporting cast, including Mary Lynn Rajskub, Freddie Prinze, Jr., and Katee Sackhoff.
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