’24’: Does Kiefer Sutherland Want to Reprise His Role as Jack Bauer?

Film and television star Kiefer Sutherland made Jack Bauer a household name playing the counterterrorism agent on Fox Network’s 24. After nine heart-pounding seasons, the show aired its series finale in 2014. Yet diehard fans of the action drama are still holding out hope for a reboot.

Sutherland discussed the possibilities of revisiting the iconic character while promoting his current show on Quibi.

Actor Kiefer Sutherland arrives at the "24" 150th Episode and Season 7 Premiere Party
Kiefer Sutherland of ’24’ | Jesse Grant/Getty Images

From Jack Bauer to Clay Bryce

In his new show for the short-form streaming platform Quibi, Sutherland plays Detective Clay Bryce in The Fugitive. Offering 14 episodes, the series is inspired by the original television show from the 1960s and the 1993 big screen blockbuster starring Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones. Sutherland’s character is in pursuit of Mike Ferro (Boyd Holbrook) who is falsely accused of a Los Angeles subway bombing.

“Historically, I was aware of the TV show even before the Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones movie came out,” Sutherland told Forbes. “At that time, it further amplified why a film was always going to be better than a television series with the story because it was so focused, a two-hour channeling of a story, and on a production level, they’re not even comparable.”

Sutherland noted the evolution of television to streaming, comparing the advancements from 24 to The Fugitive.

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“In the early 90s, it reinforced all my perceptions of television,” the Designated Survivor star said. “That’s ironic, given that those same perceptions were shattered for me in 2001 by taking on a show like 24. And now here we are doing The Fugitive again, episodically but in a whole new way.”

’24’ is still on Kiefer Sutherland’s mind

Again referring to his former iconic show on Fox, Sutherland likened the series to a long-running film.

“I learned so much over the course of making 24. Why I think television has changed is because they stopped writing an episodic version of an idea,” The Fugitive actor explained. “Instead, they started focusing on serialized shows that that would have a sensibility and an entire story. 24 was a continuous, very long 216-hour movie.”

As for whether or not Sutherland is willing to reprise his role as Jack Bauer, the actor certainly seems open to the possibility. “I’ve always left the door slightly ajar for 24 if someone comes up with a great idea,” Sutherland said.

Will Jack be back?

Apparently, the 24 alum is flexible on bringing back the indestructible agent from the Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU), willing to go for a TV or film version. The dilemma is finding the right storyline.

“I’ve been banging my head against a brick wall for a movie for so long that I’ve got a concussion,” Sutherland told Forbes with a laugh. “Honestly, the form more 24 would take doesn’t matter to me as much as the quality of the story. If someone comes up with a great story that can be told in two hours, then we’re going to make a movie. But if someone comes up with a great story that could be 24 hours, we’ll do the show.”

The Flatliners star is clearly grateful for his time on the groundbreaking show, crediting the series for his development as a performer.

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“As an actor, 24 remains one of the most dynamic experiences I’ve ever had. Where a character was allowed to have such highs and lows in such a fast period of time is a gift,” Sutherland shared. “There are very few setups that will allow you to do that, and I find that incredibly fun, challenging, and exciting.”

While Sutherland would be on board for a reboot if the right script comes along, his priority is preserving 24‘s legacy.

“There’s been nine seasons, and I think it rests in a credible place,” he said. “The difficulty is you don’t ever want to do anything that is going to damage that.”