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Personal Quotes

“Now I know how Charlie Sheen feels, I’ve lost all feeling in my lower half” (his reaction to winning the Golden Globe Award!).

When you’re a young actor you like to go for characters with a bit of flair, so in many films I ended up playing the weirdos. But I can assure you I’m not a psycho or a criminal or a bully.

There are two kinds of event in rodeo and bull riding’s one of the roughstock events. I was into immobilising cows myself.

On his 1990s career: “You could say I was not on everybody’s first list to do the bigger films. Luckily other opportunities have come along.”

“You can’t do all these interviews about how wonderful you both are and then when it falls apart six days before your wedding not expect people to have a shot at you. I know Julia and I unwittingly asked for it.” (about the much-hyped broken engagement to Julia Roberts)

Do I think it’s important to the show (24 (2001)) that Jack eventually dies and does so when you least expect it? Yeah. It will be very obvious when people start going, ‘Oh, please. How many bad days can one guy have?’

If the acting thing hadn’t worked out for me, I’d be laying phone cable in northern Ontario.

You can’t ask the press to service you with everything that they have and not expect some of the other stuff in return if you’re going to live your life like I have,’ he says. ‘I’ve done enough stupid things that I might as well walk up to them and say, “Here, if I were you, I’d write it like this …” In all fairness, the press has been pretty nice to me; even in having a go at me, it’s done with a kind of humor. Only once or twice have I seen something that made me think, wow, that person really doesn’t like me – where it’s been malicious as opposed to “what an idiot”.

You know, Gauguin is one of my favorite painters, not because I think he was a great painter but because he was a great artist, his passion and belief in what he was doing; he gave up everything to follow his passion. I have so much respect for that because I don’t have that kind of courage.

I got really lucky in that my dad stopped working just as I started. He took a few years off, not on purpose, but he has three sons with his wife of 30 years and he wanted to be involved with them. As much as I missed him being around when I was growing up, I think he missed us too and he wasn’t going to let that happen again. So it wasn’t until much later that people started making comparisons. When I started, with films like The Bay Boy (1984) and Stand by Me (1986), I look back on those interviews and I’m amazed; there’s no mention of my father, it’s not even “son of Donald Sutherland”. I caught a bit of a break in that it never felt like a weight to me. It’s amazing that I was stupid enough to try it – we’re talking about one of the most prolific actors in film history – but my parents were very gracious about making me feel like I at least had a shot at making my own path.

I think the most attractive thing (in a woman) is a sense of humor. If someone can make you laugh, you’ve gotten a lot out of the way.

It’s funny because I’m strongly opposed to the death penalty, and I don’t believe in ‘acceptable losses’. It’s complicated for me to play this character, because, unlike a film, I don’t know the end but I want a situation to arise within the show where he’s actually confronted with a lot of the things he’s done” – on Bauer’s trigger-happy nature.

I like chatting with people. If people ask me a direct question, I give them a direct answer and I feel I’ve always done that with the press.

My mind went totally blank and my body went numb. It was a very surreal moment….It was a great night. I admit I felt really cocky for about 24 hours, and then I had to go back to work” – on winning the 2001 Best Actor Golden Globe.

When asked what attracted him to film acting: “I got into it for the girls.”

My old man started to watch 24 (2001) in France when he was on location – it didn’t have any commercials over there. Then, he came to the States and he hated the commercials. Then, he went back to France and he missed the commercials, because it gave him time to breathe. I always found that funny.

[Talking about his father, actor Donald Sutherland, being a fan of his TV series 24 (2001)]: I remember last year we were having dinner and I made the mistake of saying I had to go home soon because we’re shooting x, y and z. And he got cross with me, because I had told him what I was shooting, just not thinking about it, and obviously gave away a piece of the plot.

Twelve years ago, if anyone had suggested I would do TV, I would have laughed at them. Film actors didn’t do TV. But when I was finally offered 24 (2001), it came like a saving grace. I owe it a lot.

[2006] I’ve had one-night stands, but they’re just not my nature. I think of myself as much more of a romantic than that. The point of being with someone is out of the hope and desire for connection. Otherwise, you might as well just go home and masturbate…

[2006] I think I’m pretty demanding as a person. I like things to be a certain way, everything from being on time to being tidy. I haven’t been flexible with that. I mean, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve hopefully become a lot more flexible. But, of course, I am living alone…I had the 24 (2001) cast over for dinner one night and I heard that Reiko Aylesworth, who played “Michelle”, said, ‘It’s so nice that he cleaned up his place’. Someone else said, ‘He didn’t clean it up for you, honey. It’s always this clean’. And her response was, ‘Ewwww’. But there’s so much disorder in every other aspect of what we do, if you can control your environment at home, you do it.

[2006] I’ve always thought that I look different in my head than what I see. I had a real big problem with it when I saw Stand by Me (1986). I thought I’d ruined the movie. I so clearly wanted my character to be a mean, angry version of James Dean. And, obviously, I didn’t look anything like that. That’s always thrown me off. So I tend not to look in mirrors.

I think that the day you’ve figured out the difference between women and men is the day that you’re no longer attracted to women. It’s the difference that is so fantastic and frustrating and angering and really sexy.

My mother’s five foot two and, I’ll be honest with you, she’s the only person I’m scared of.

There are two things that Jack Bauer never does. Show mercy and go to the bathroom.

I’ve had some amazing people in my life. Look at my father. He came from a small fishing village of five hundred people and, at six foot four with giant ears and a kind of very odd expression, thought he could be a movie star. So go figure, you know?

[on the rigors of action roles] It’s amazing that I’m still alive.