For the reboot of "24: Live Another Day," the action was moved to London, where Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland), now a fugitive from justice, has stumbled on a plot to assassinate President Heller (William Devane), but also to use unmanned drones to wipe out a great deal of the population of the city. The only person who initially believes Jack is Kate Morgan (Yvonne Strahovski), a disgraced CIA operative, who is being sent back to the U.S. after it is discovered that her husband committed treason -- and she didn't figure it out.
On tonight's episode, following an intense and deadly shootout, Jack and Kate are in a race against time to save the life of a key player tied to the imminent terror threat. Meanwhile, computer whiz Jordan Reed (Giles Matthey) is ordered into the field on a perilous mission. Then, after President Heller engages Margot (Michelle Fairley) to end her savage attacks, he faces an unthinkable, game-changing decision in the all-new "Day 9: 5:00 PM-6:00 PM."
In a recent interview to promote the summer series, Yvonne Strahovski talked about her initial reservations about doing the show, matching the intensity of Kiefer Sutherland, what "24" gives her that she didn't get on "Chuck" or "Dexter," and more.
Did you initially have any reservations about joining such an established series with so much history already behind it, and what was day one like filming?
I think my trepidation initially came just with the label that I would be playing a CIA agent, purely because I've touched on something like that before in a previous series, but then, obviously, after that initial thought, I realized this vehicle is such a different show and not really something that I've been a part of before. It's so unique in its own right, which is why it's such a popular and widely known television show.
Kate is like the Jack Bauer of the CIA, so knowing how Kiefer portrays Jack, did it hinder or enhance the approach you had with your character?
I definitely take inspiration from Kiefer. I definitely saw early on the similarities between the two characters and, I think, it's important for me as an actress to recognize those particular similarities that ought to be there between Jack Bauer and Kate Morgan. That's definitely a part of the storyline that we're going into. Obviously, I want to add my own flare to it, so that's a whole separate thing, but definitely I take inspiration from Kiefer and I continue to as I see him work. He just really dives into this quite effortlessly. He's been doing it for so long and he has so much to contribute to this as a series; not just as Jack Bauer, but he really is mentally immersed in the machinery that is this show from all different aspects.
What have you had to do on "24" that you haven't done on "Dexter" or "Chuck"?
I think the style, the way that this show is filmed, the cameras are always moving. You can't really lie in front of these cameras. They're really with you in the moment, and they linger, and that's what I like about this show; it's that lingering on the activist as they think things through, which I love. I love that part of it. There's also some scenes that I've had to do that I've never done before on anything, whether it's television, film, or theater, so that's always really great when I read a script and I see a scene and I think, "Wow, that's going to be challenging, I don't know how I'm going to do this, but here we go." We'll see some of those things coming out as the episodes continue to air.
Can you talk a little bit then about how the gloom and darkness of London has contributed to the drama of this show?
Yes, that's interesting. It's definitely contributed to my mood, personally. So I think, yes, it definitely adds to the show. It's an interesting flavor. I think London as a city is adding a completely different flavor to this show, especially visually. I think that it looks great on camera and it offers up a whole new platform for different types of characters, English-type characters, Scottish, with different accents on the show. So, I think, definitely the weather as well is adding to that whole general vibe.
Talk a little bit about your chemistry with Kiefer. You know a guy like that whose character is so intense, how do you go in there each week and try to match his intensity?
I don't really think about it that way. I think about it more as: What would Kate do? It's about being as prepared as you possibly can be as an actor, know the script, know the scenes, know what's going on in the scenes and be ready for anything to change. So, yes, I'm as prepared as I possibly can be, which I think pays off in the end because we do shoot at any extremely fast pace. The show, especially when we're working with director Jon Cassar, and when you've got Kiefer and Jon Cassar on set, then it works very fast, which I like. That's the energy of the show and I feel prepared for those days when we do work that fast
Jack is not willing to back down when it comes to stopping Margot, even if that means teaming up with Kate. Do you think part of the reason she is so gung ho is because it's a way for her to prove herself and make up for what her husband did?
Yes, absolutely. I think that's definitely at the core of what is driving her to take on everything that's in front of her at this point. She's been given a second chance, so she sees Jack Bauer as her second chance right now. At first it was trying to find Jack Bauer, and now that she's done that, she's sort of on a roll to keep trying to prove herself to herself and to others around her.
"24: Live Another Day" airs Monday nights at 9 p.m. ET/PT on FOX.