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No More ’24’?

Kiefer Sutherland says there are “no plans” to continue making new seasons of 24 and he worries he is too old to play action man Jack Bauer.

The 45-year-old star isn’t sure he can sustain playing action man Jack Bauer in the hit counter-terrorism drama – which was recently revived for a new season, 24: Live Another Day, three years after it initially ended – and worries his body can’t keep up with the death-defying stunts required for the role.

Kiefer is quoted by the Daily Star as saying: “I have loved bringing Jack back and my heart says I want to play him until I am an old man. But my head says that now is the right time to stop.

“There are no plans to kill Jack off, and while he is alive I guess there is always a chance for a new season. But at the moment there are no plans.”

While his famous role has earned him numerous accolades, the Emmy Award-winning actor admits he can’t quite fathom how he managed to film 192 episodes of 24 during its initial run from 2001 to 2010.

Kiefer explained: “Physically, 24 is a hard show to do. I look back and see we did 192 episodes over eight seasons. I don’t know how we did it. It makes you want to go take a nap.”


In the new 24, Jack is more brooding and just as fun to watch

Four years in hiding seem to have done Jack Bauer a world of good. In the person of Kiefer Sutherland, he still looks fighting fit, and he sounds more interesting than he has in a long time. Being on the run seems to have furrowed his voice as well as his brow; he’s more introspective than before and seems to be carrying a heavier load of guilt, though he’s rarely specific as to what he’s guilty about. The worst thing he ever did was cause the death of his wife back in 24’s first season, and he had only indirect responsibility even for that. No season since then has had so ingenious and involving a storyline; but the new one – 24: Live Another Day – is running it close.

This new series is set in London, conceivably because it’s cheaper to film in Britain than in the USA. That isn’t the only economy that’s been imposed; Jack now has only half his previous number of hours to perform his regular job of detecting an apocalyptic threat and then defusing it. This accounts for the bemusing new title; if they hadn’t dreamed it up they would have had to call the show 12. Apparently, though, the show will still cover a 24-hour time period, but certain hours will be omitted from the action. This hasn’t happened in the episodes shown so far, and I’m not certain how it will be handled when it does. Will all the characters be presumed to have taken a nap, so as to conserve their strengths for dealing with the ongoing grave international crisis? Or will the story simply wind up and then start all over again, perhaps with the revelation of a new threat behind the threat? It’s been known to happen on 24; in fact it’s been standard procedure. It seems that Jack is not going to have everything wrapped up before his bedtime. Another all-nighter beckons.

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