Kiefer Sutherland knows better than to assume he’s done with 24. “I’ve said that twice and have been wrong, so I won’t say that again,” he tells Rolling Stone. The actor, who recently launched a country-music career, has signed on as a producer for 24: Legacy – a new show in the same universe that stars Web Therapy’s Dan Bucatinsky and Straight Outta Compton’s Corey Hawkins, among others – and has not ruled out reprising his Jack Bauer character. Shooting will begin imminently.
“It’s a phenomenal script,” he says of the new series. “I think it’s going to be incredibly liberating for the writers to not have to figure out one more bad day for Jack Bauer. They get to write for new characters. And Bauer’s still out there, so you never know what’s going to happen.”
Sutherland is currently focusing on his new TV series, Designated Survivor, which he’s filming right now for ABC. “It’s got the feeling of The West Wing, but there’s a thrilling aspect to the show as well,” he says. “I have not been as excited about doing something as I am right now, since the early days of 24.”
On the show, he plays Tom Kirkman, a low-ranking cabinet member who becomes president after an attack on the State of the Union address. It also features Natascha McElhone (Californication) as his wife, Maggie Q (Nikita) as an FBI investigator and Kal Penn (Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle) — who worked in various capacities for the Obama administration off and on since 2009 — as Kirkman’s speechwriter.
“‘Designated survivor’ refers to a member of each party during a State of the Union who is sequestered, so if the entire ascendency to the president is wiped out, you have a representative for each party from the cabinet and one of those people becomes president,” Sutherland explains. “I play a housing minister who is about to be fired and, as punishment, is made to be the designated survivor during the State of the Union.”
After a “terrible attack,” he is appointed president and faces three problems: How does his family adapt to his new role? How does he deal with political rivals and a power-hungry military? And how will he find the person or persons responsible for the attack. “The character has to face all of these fights and figure out the appropriate response,” he says. “That’s what the first season is about.”
Sutherland, who previously told Rolling Stone that he did not want people to underestimate his commitment to his music career, says another thing he likes about his show is its shooting schedule. “I’m touring in April and May and we begin shooting again in June,” he says. “The way I was able to schedule that work, I will still be able to play five, six dates a month.”
This may come as a surprise to his more casual fans, but Kiefer Sutherland has had a hankering for some country crooning for some time, and he’s finally doing something about it.
The former “24” star is embarking on a career in country music with the forthcoming album “Down in a Hole,” due out this summer. On Monday, he debuted the first single and video from the album, the rueful “Not Enough Whiskey,” with the help of Rolling Stone.
“If I hear about an actor doing a music project, my eyes are the first to roll,” he told the magazine. “It’s been done before and, on some levels, not very well. A lot of actors make records but won’t tour to support them or make videos, and it ends up not being serious. I felt strongly that this was something I wanted to do.”
To further prove his country bona fides, Sutherland will be presenting at the Academy of Country Music Awards on April 3, 2015, broadcast live on CBS, before kicking off a national tour on April 14.
Donald Sutherland shares the screen with his son Kiefer for the first time in the upcoming western, Forsaken, and ET has a behind-the-scenes first look.
“The most profound gift that I got from this experience was I realized that we spent nine weeks together, at least 14 hours a day, focused on building something together,” Kiefer said. “That ended up being the most special gift.”
The drama takes place in 1872 when gunfighter John Henry Clayton (Kiefer) retires and returns to his hometown of Fowler, Wyoming, hoping to repair his relationship with his estranged father, Reverend Clayton (Donald). Their bond is once again put in jeopardy when a gang begins terrorizing the local ranchers who refuse to sell their land to the railroad company that wants to build there. John Henry knows he’s the only one capable of fighting off the gang, but his father forbids him from returning to a life of violence.
Despite being an Emmy and Golden Globe winner, Kiefer admitted to having concerns about playing opposite his legendary father.
Jack Bauer is heading to the White House. Kiefer Sutherland is returning to primetime television with Designated Survivor, an ABC conspiracy thriller drama, in which the 24 star will play the President of the United States. Designated Survivor, which was written on spec by David Guggenheim (Safe House), has received a straight-to-series order. The script, with Sutherland attached to star and Simon Kinberg (The Martian, X-Men, Days Of Future Past) to executive produce for the Mark Gordon Company, sparked a major bidding war before landing at ABC.
In Designated Survivor, a lower level United States Cabinet member (Sutherland) is suddenly appointed President after a catastrophic attack during the State of the Union kills everyone above him in the Presidential line of succession. This is a family drama wrapped around a conspiracy thriller about an ordinary man in an extraordinary situation.
Creator Guggenheim executive produces alongside Kinberg, who will exec produce via his Genre Films banner, Sutherland and Entertainment 360’s Suzan Bymel.
This marks the first production order for the Mark Gordon Co. since it went independent earlier this year as the Mark Gordon Company Studios, backed by Entertainment One. The MGC will serve as the lead studio, with ABC Studios as a studio partner on the series. EOne will handle international distribution.
The title of the project, Designated Survivor, refers to the term used for a member of the U.S Cabinet who is sequestered in a safe location when the President and the country’s other top leaders are gathered in one place, such as during State of the Union addresses and presidential inaugurations. The policy is designed to preserve continuity of government in the event of a catastrophic occurrence when the President and those in line of succession are killed, leaving the designated survivor to become the Acting President of the United States under the Presidential Succession Act.
There already is a drama titled Designated Survivor in the works for next season. The project, set up at Fox, is being written by Nikki Toscano and exec produced by Johnny Depp. In Fox’s Designated Survivor, when the President, VP, and Cabinet all meet in one location for an event such as the State of the Union, one Cabinet member is conspicuously missing: the Designated Survivor. Hidden away in an undisclosed location with Presidential-level security, the Designated Survivor is ready to take the reins of the President should the unthinkable happen and the rest of the government is wiped out in an attack. ABC’s green light to the Kiefer Sutherland series will likely impact the fate of the similarly-themed project at Fox.
MGC also has legal drama Conviction in development at ABC with a put pilot commitment, with ABC Studios co-producing. Since becoming independent, MGC also has stepped in to finance and produce a limited series adaptation of Jennifer Steil’s novel The Ambassador’s Wife, with Anne Hathaway set to star and produce, and has teamed with Francis Lawrence for two drama projects.
During Mark Gordon CQuantico 1o.’s stint as a pod based at ABC Studios, the company launched a number of series. It has several on the air — ABC’s veteran Grey’s Anatomy and breakout Quantico, CBS’ Criminal Minds and the upcoming Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders as well as the Showtime drama series Ray Donovan outside of the ABC Studios deal.
In addition to Safe House and its upcoming sequel, Guggenheim’s feature credits include Stolen and the upcoming Bad Boys 3, Black Box and the franchise reboot of Commando. In TV, he previously co-wrote and co-executive produced with Alex Kurtzman and Bob Orci the Fox pilot Exit Strategy starring Ethan Hawke and directed by Antoine Fuqua. He is repped by Paradigm, Madhouse and attorney Jamie Afifi.
Kinberg, who wrote and is producing the upcoming X-Men: Apocalypse and recently produced The Martian, is executive producing two X-Men-themed TV series projects, pilot Legion at FX and Hellfire at Fox.
Sutherland won an Emmy, Golden Globe and SAG Award for his signature role as Agent Jack Bauer on Fox’s Emmy-winning drama series 24 and reprised his role in the 24: Live Another Day event series. There is a new 24 event series eying a green light that revolves around new characters.
The Expendables 3 might not have set the box office alight, but you can’t keep a good action hero down.
Sylvester Stallone is reportedly planning to bring his OAP ass-kicker franchise to the small-screen, with an Expendables event series in the works at Fox.
Much like how the films united action heroes of ’80s and ’90s cinema – Stallone, Schwarzenegger et al – so this new show is looking to bring together iconic TV tough guys from yesteryear.
Casting is yet to be confirmed, but in the meantime, here’s Digital Spy’s dream team for the TV Expendables.
1. Kiefer Sutherland
He might not be eager to reprise Jack Bauer any time soon (dammit!) but Kiefer has to be on this list. His commanding presence makes him a natural fit for team leader – the TV equivalent of Stallone’s Barney Ross.
Canadian actor Kiefer Sutherland was nominated Tuesday for a Golden Raspberry Award — better known as a Razzie — for his role in the made-in-Toronto epic Pompeii.
The Razzies pay tribute to the year’s worst achievements in film.
Sutherland is nominated as Worst Supporting Actor along with Mel Gibson (Expendables 3), Kelsey Grammer (Expendables 3, Legends of Oz, Thinks Like a Man Too and Trannies 4), Shaquille O’Neal (Blended) and Arnold Schwarzenegger (Expendables 3).
Last May, The Guardian critic Stuart Heritage described Sutherland’s acting in Pompeii as “a classic panto ham turn; all evil eyeballs and implacably ludicrous accent.”
Worst Actor nominations went to Kirk Cameron (Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas), Nicolas Cage (Left Behind), Kellan Lutz (The Legend of Hercules), Seth MacFarlane (A Million Ways To Die in the West) and Adam Sandler (Blended).
Blended co-star Drew Barrymore earned a Worst Actress nod, as well as Cameron Diaz (The Other Woman, Sex Tape), Melissa McCarthy (Tammy), Charlize Theron (A Million Ways to Die in the West) and Gaia Weiss (The Legend of Hercules).
Worst Supporting Actress nominees are Cameron Diaz (Annie), Megan Fox (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), Nicola Peltz (Transformers 4: Age of Extinction), Susan Sarandon (Tammy) and Brigitte Ridenour (Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas).
Razzie dishonours for Worst Picture went to Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas, Left Behind, The Legend of Hercules, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Transformers 4: Age of Extinction.
The latter three films will compete against Atlas Shrugged 3: Who Is John Galt? and Annie for Worst Remake, Rip-Off or Sequel.
Among the nominees in the Worst Screen Combo category are Kirk Cameron “and his ego” and Kellan Lutz and “either his abs, his pecs or his glutes.”
Click here for the full list of nominees.