Porn News

It’s a -30- for “24”- Memorable Guest Stars

Jack Bauer’s famous last words: “Trust me, I will protect you.” Who was your favorite terrorist? Mine was Abu Fayed in Season 6, and with Bill Buchanan getting it in Season 7, I was totally bummed out.

from – When it wraps next week after eight on-the-brink of destruction seasons, “24” will be remembered as a post 9/11 pop cultural phenomenon that changed the scope of what a television series could do.

“It really changed so much about television and how it was shot,” says Sarah Clarke, who played villainess Nina Myers. “It was so cinematic in its approach by showing all the different perspectives of one event. That’s become commonplace on TV now but it wasn’t then.”

The show also offered a huge gallery of supporting players a rare opportunity to create indelible characters, who despite some spectacularly shocking deaths, live on in television history.
Kiefer Sutherland
Kiefer Sutherland

“It became the thing to do. It was an experience that was talked about among actors,” says Executive Producer Howard Gordon. “We developed a reputation for being very actor-friendly and that drew people to us.”

24 has featured a steady stream of Oscar (Jon Voight), Tony (Cherry Jones) and Emmy (Jean Smart) winners along with lesser known character actors (Shohreh Aghdashloo, Gregory Itzin) who, through some brilliant casting, broke through and became some of television’s most talked-about characters.

“We tried to never ‘stunt’ things too much,” says Gordon of the show’s casting. “When we’ve had very recognizable actors it’s always a hazard. We like to keep the illusion that this thing is really happening and we’ve had some great fortune with actors who are every bit as good as the well-known ones.”

Having Kiefer Sutherland as the series’ star didn’t hurt either. “Kiefer was certainly a magnet,” says Gordon. “A lot of his friends, like C.Thomas Howell and Lou Diamond Phillips played guest parts. He’d done a movie with Dennis Hopper. And if people didn’t know him, they knew his father, so between the two of them they drew a lot of great people.”

In fact, says Gordon, there’s a long list of actors – he declines to name names — who lobbied for parts on the show and never made it on to the series. When the casting director put out a “last call for anyone who is a fan of the show” looking for someone for the role of UN Secretary General in one of the series’ last episodes ER alum Eriq La Salle signed on. “It’s a small part, but he was happy to do it,” Gordon says.

There is one actor Gordon regrets never having cast. “The biggest disappointment was not having Donald Sutherland on,” he explains. “We did talk about him playing Jack’s father, but it just didn’t work out with the timing.” The role ultimately went to James Cromwell.

That particular storyline, in season six, was Gordon’s least favorite of the entire series. “We introduced Jack’s father way too quickly and clumsily,” he says. “That season was like the nuisance child that never quite found himself.”

He gives his highest marks to season one (“Where we began to figure out how it can be done”), season five (“the most cohesive and exciting”) and the final season because “the show got progressively harder to do, so if you add the degree of difficulty, I really like this year”).

Gordon acknowledges in its later years the show that was born during the Bush administration and came of age during the Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo scandals faced its challenges navigating a changing political climate.

“The world is not same as it was when we started,” he says. “We had a tricky conundrum. How do you become the poster child for some for the war on terror and then bear the responsibility for the blowback? I think we really handled it well.”

It seems only fitting then, that as the series prepares to sign-off Jack Bauer managed to figure into the latest real-life foiled terrorist plot against the United States. During a press conference about the dramatic capture of the alleged Times Square attempted bomber, New York City police commissioner Ray Kelly gave Jack a shout out,. saying what television’s super agent can do in 24 hours, U.S. law enforcement accomplished in 53.

“That was definitely ironic because everything that happened in the world was fodder for us,” says Gordon.

Gordon, who is currently working on a pilot about a female CIA agent based on an Israeli show, won’t divulge any specifics about what the finale except to say, “We tried pretty much every ending, from the spectrum of the truly tragic — seeing Jack’s last moments — to Jack having his happily ever after but the most authentic one seemed somewhere in between.”

So while Jack won’t be walking off into the sunset, at least he makes it out alive. He has to since a 20th Century Fox movie is in the works but Gordon says the film “will be its own thing,” adding, “The show is really over. I don’t think [the finale] overreaches too much. I think it’s pitch perfect. I hope people are satisfied with the ending, but I hope they miss the show.”

from – As much as Kiefer Sutherland’s Jack Bauer, Hope’s wife Teri set the tone for the entire “24” series. Both with a brief case of amnesia (a standard of preposterousness to which only cougars may aspire) and by getting killed in the final moments of the first day (showing that anyone could, and probably would, die on the show).

“It had been a running joke in my career, ‘when am I going to be off a show?’ ” Hope says. “But with ‘24,’ I thought, ‘I’m settling in. They can’t kill me, I’m the hero’s pregnant wife!’ ”

That said, Hope thought it was the right call for her character to be killed by Sarah Clarke’s double-agent Nina, setting up Jack for eight days of pathos. “We had a back-up plan, but it was clear when we were shooting that I should be dead.

“There was an interesting discussion about it. Kiefer wondered if audiences would follow a hero who failed. I think it proved they would, they would follow Kiefer anywhere. I felt it was something new for TV. The hero’s wife dies. People cheat and they pay the price for it. Nuclear bombs do go off.”

It almost, almost, overshadows Hope’s other most-famous moment, when her character climbs out of a car accident with no memory of her husband, daughter or the Serb killers on her trail. The twist was a desperate necessity — the writers needed her character out of the action for a few episodes. Director Stephen Hopkins actually had suffered amnesia and coached her through it, but when she admitted she was nervous, he replied, “you should be!”

“I was just so happy to have a job,” Hope says. “If they asked me to wear a clown nose, I would. My job was just to play it the best I could. How long that show has been on, there must be something more ridiculous that has happened . . .”

Uh, no.

“. . . oh, well that’s OK,” Hope says, laughing.

She can live with that, since it’s accompanied by her other legacy.

“I saw that Jack’s latest girlfriend got killed,” Hope says, referring to former FBI agent Renee Walker (Annie Wersching). “I thought, ‘well, what did you think was going to happen?’ My icy fingers are reaching out from the grave.”

CTU analyst, Days 1, 2 and 3
Actor: Sarah Clarke

When “24” fans first encountered Nina Myers, she was a close ally of Jack Bauer’s. Impressed by her proximity to television’s new hero, fans accorded her great respect. Her transformation into double agent was truly hard to foresee.

“In the first season, they seemed to respond to the idea that Nina was this powerful woman,” says Sarah Clarke. “Then, when she double crossed Jack, it was more of ‘How could you do it?’ and ‘You really broke my heart.’ People were very intrigued by what was going to happen next. By the third season everyone was like, “Oh my God, you are such a bitch!’”

She certainly was. By the time Jack shot Nina—after all, she did kill his wife, Teri, and had to suffer— both character and actress were ready to go. “By the third season it had gotten so extreme with what Nina was doing,” says Clarke, who plays Bella’s mom in the “Twilight” movies. “Originally with the confrontation between me and [Jack’s daughter] Kim, they were going to have me get away and Jack going to shoot me but miss. Kiefer was like, ‘Enough, I’m not that dumb. I have to kill her this time.’ We all agreed.”

Seldom has a character’s death brought such a sense of satisfaction to fans of the show. Even though Clarke was “sad to go,” she left with something more permanent than a gig on a prime-time show—she married her fellow guest star, George Mason, who played Xander Berkeley.

“I didn’t want to tell anyone we were dating because something made me feel I would be the town hussy if it got out,” Clarke says. “We finally told the first AD I had an announcement. It was back in May of the first season and everyone thought I was going to announce we were picked up. They got everybody together – it must have been 100 people — and I was so nervous. I was standing next to Xander and said, “We’re getting married!’ Everyone was like, ‘To who?’ I was so nervous I said, ‘To George!’”

Senator and President, Days 1-5
Actor: Dennis Haysbert

Of the countless characters who were killed off, rubbed out, stabbed, shot and otherwise annihilated on “24,” Dennis Haysbert fought his execution the hardest. After all, he did play the president.

“In season four I was having lunch in my trailer and a PA came in and said, ‘The producers want to talk to you.’ I went up and saw the producers and they said, ‘We want to kill you off.’ I said, ‘Excuse me? Good luck with that but I won’t be shooting it.’ I guess that stunned them a little bit,” Haysbert says.

“I said, ‘Why would you kill off this character? For three seasons, he’s been the number two person on the show. We went round and round , and they sent Howard [ Gordon ] who I was closest to on the production staff. Over breakfast he gave me his pitch and said , We really cant do this season without this. I promise you your character will be on this entire season. I said Howard, ‘that’s great , but he’ll be dead. You’ve killed a lot of characters before but this is David Palmer – this is the guy that stabilizes Jack.”

Even though he fought tooth-and-nail to stay on the show, Haysbert, who starred on CBS in “The Unit” afterward, says his performance resonated with the future president Barack Obama.

“I met him several times and he made references about me being the first black president. A lot of people had made that reference. It was a very striking parallel,” he says.”The way I played that role wasn’t going to help Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson, but it was going to help a man like Barack Obama. If I had played the role after Obama became president , people would have said I was playing Obama which would have been fine. I get a little bit of a thrill knowing I played it before.”

Nefarious Political Wife, Days 1, 2 and 3
Actor: Penny Johnson

Sherry Palmer was the Lady MacBeth of “24.” She would stop at nothing—treason, murder — to see her husband, Senator David Palmer, elected President. In playing the role, actress Penny Johnson made a conscious choice not to fraternize with star Kiefer Sutherland.

“My character did not trust his, so while shooting I decided I should stay away from Kiefer on the set so we could use whatever we had for the scene,” she says. “The two characters were so strong we didn’t want to ruin anything that was organic and hanging out on the set would have done that.”

Through some discreetly arranged machinations of his own, David realized just how corrupt, how far gone his wife was and he divorced her. But Sherry would not take a hint and go away. She came back in seasons two and three to try to rekindle the flame with her husband by keeping him informed about possible conspiracies in his government. When she was finally taken out, in season 3, Johnson says she remained blissfully unaware of Sherry’s demise.

“In my head, I’ve never gone. If you don’t have a funeral, you don’t have a dead body,” she says.” I never watched her demise so I never knew if it was true or not. That’s how I played it out.”

Besides having a thick sirloin of a part to sink her teeth into. Johnson says that she was proud to be on a show that was so avant garde, politically and racially. ” ‘24’ was smart enough to cross the color line with a black president and America was smart enough and brave enough to make it happen,” she says. “24 is notorious for art imitating life imitating art, especially with 9/11. We were ahead of the world then and we were ahead of the world when it came to the presidential campaign.”

CTU analyst, later director, Days 2-5
Actor: Reiko Aylesworth

If only viewers saw what ends up on “24’s” cutting room floor, the show would be called “48,” Aylesworth says.

“They sometimes threw in everything but the kitchen sink, see what works,” she says. “Whole personal storylines were removed. Actors who filmed three, four episodes never appeared.”

For Aylesworth, who played the bedroomed-eyed love interest of Tony Almeida (Carlos Bernard), the sink included a briefly hinted at — then quickly abandoned — lesbian past with a coworker. “That was hysterical,” she says. “We played it to the hilt, but in the editing room they decided to cut all the lines about it. But they couldn’t edit out all these looks we kept giving each other.”

They couldn’t edit Michelle out either, despite many attempts. “They tried to kill me off so many times. I kept asking the writers, how am I getting the hatchet?”

First up: Suicide, because she thought Tony was dead (“Made no sense”). Next: Trapped in a hotel with a killer virus, she’s stabbed to death instead (“they wanted to do the unexpected”). Both were nixed. “I wanted to go out in a hail of bullets,” Aylesworth says. “I didn’t want to go out like a punk.”

So, coming back for Day 5 only to be killed off (along with former President David Palmer) in the first few minutes? Punk-ish? “I can see how it was really bold, and good for the show, really in the vein of ‘24.’ But yeah, it’s not how I wanted the character to go out.”

For the proposed movie, then, maybe Aylesworth can do what Almeida did — propose the miraculous recovery of his character based on a technicality (there was no silent clock after his supposed death). “Yes!” Aylesworth says. After all, “24” is essentially a comic book, despite the college courses and fans in government. She says that all the things people either blame or credit “24” for — from torture to electing a black president — are giving too much credence to televised fiction.

“It’s shot in this voyeuristic way that makes it feel gritty, but it’s not real,” Aylesworth says.

“We called it ‘Dallas on Crack.

Evil mom of Middle East sleeper cell, Day 4
Actor: Shohreh Aghdashloo

Travelling in Morocco, Shohreh Aghdashloo was approached, as she often is, by a fan of “24” — this time, a uniformed member of a hotel’s security staff.

To his friend, the guard cried, “Take a picture of me and this terrorist!”

Aghdashloo laughs. “The whole place went into a coma. I said as loudly as I could, ’I’m an actor!’”

Which is the same line she’s used for everyone — critics included — since she stole Day 4 as terrorist sleeper suburban mom Dina Araz. Though the show took some heat for its portrayal of people from the Middle East, Aghdashloo said the role was “complex — as you say, something you can sink your teeth into,” and as an actor, you want to play as many challenging parts — bad or good — as possible.

Which is not to say Aghdashloo wasn’t aware of a possible backlash from her native Iran and elsewhere. When she was offered the role, she was told, like every “24” actor, that the writers didn’t know what was going to happen to her character (it makes everyone act a little more mysterious). She declined. So the producers took the rare step of telling her what was in store. “I needed to know what I was up against,” Aghdashloo says. “I had to prepare what I would say.”

Luckily, the backlash wasn’t as bad as some predicted, she adds. “They understand it’s drama. More often, they would say ‘we’re so happy that an Iranian is successful in Hollywood.’”

It helps, of course, that Aghdashloo was such a delicious villain, gliding down the stairs after serving her son’s American girlfriend poisoned tea (fun fact: that role was played by then-unknown Leighton Meester), and hissing, “Behrooooz, I am so disappointed in you.”

“Right after that episode was shown, a friend of mine, a comedian, called,” Aghdashloo says with a chuckle. “And he said, ‘Oh my God, you even scared me.’

“I told him later that I would love to play an ordinary person, like a servant. He said, ‘No one will believe it unless the tea kills someone.’”

CTU analyst, Days 4 and 5
Actor: Louis Lombardi

Of all the deaths on “24” — Jack’s girlfriends, the presidents, the countless, faceless thugs (who cleans them all up?) — perhaps none was as hard to take as that of Edgar, the affable, roly-poly computer analyst. Maybe because he was so . . . normal. No secret past. No love triangles. No “I’m a double agent who speaks fluent Serbian and hides bodies in the wall.”

“He was an unconventional hero,” Lombardi says. “He’s the guy next door. He’s not Jack Bauer, but he’s saving the world with a computer, not a gun. Fans watched and said, ‘we could be you.’ ”

Lombardi got the part — oddly enough — because “24” producer Joel Surnow saw him on “The Sopranos” “He said, ‘I got the perfect part for you.’ I’m expecting to be busting mobsters, carrying a gun,” Lombardi says. “Turns out, it’s Edgar.”

But by flipping Lombardi’s native Bronx persona, making him the meek whipping boy of socially awkward Chloe (Mary Lynn Rajskub), “it was the role of a lifetime,” he says. The chemistry between the two was so fun to watch, fans campaigned for them to become lovers. Lombardi, however, “felt like it was more of a brother and sister thing.”

Part of the secret of “24’s” success is that, unlike any other show on television, it’s a tragedy. The innocent suffer, Jack never gets to experience happiness, and the terrorists often win. Though Lombardi loves the show, he says the hardest thing to take was being sad all the time. “Edgar’s not married, his mom is dying and he can’t save her, he’s abused by his co-workers, then gets gassed. That’s a sad character. I got depressed.”

Not as depressed as fans did after the gassing. Edgar, exposed to a virus, collapses on the floor of CTU as his colleagues watch helplessly in a glass-walled safe area. “I was like Fred Flintstone,” Lombardi laughs. “Let me in!”

“Every where I go, that character is so loved,” Lombardi says. “Even today, people say ‘oh my God, I cried.’ I’m talking about big guys like me. And not from one group. Kids, 10, 15 years old, up to 70-year-old men and women. I’ve never had a reaction like what I had from ‘24.’”

Secret Service Agent, Days 1-7
Actor: Glenn Morshower

Aside from Jack Bauer, Agent Aaron Pierce is the only character to have appeared in each of the first seven seasons of “24.” That longevity has convinced some fans that Glenn Morshower, who played Pierce, really was a member of the Secret Service, a mistake he doesn’t always correct.

“I was shooting a movie in Bulgaria and I got off the plane, and this enormous man who had to be 400 pounds was waiting for me. As soon as I walked by he opened his arms and said, ‘Aaron.’ He wanted a hug,” Morshower says. “Very seldom do I have people who just want to shake hands. Everybody wants a hug. It’s because of the tenderness of Aaron’s spirit. It’s been life altering. People come up and say, ‘Thank you for what you do for our country’ I’m perfectly willing to play along because many people need the escapism that television offers.”

During his tenure on the show, Morshower, who also works as a motivational speaker, became best friends with Dennis Haysbert. “People loved the relationship between Palmer and Pierce. He was a big brother for me,” says Morshower who bonded with the Allstate pitchman after his father died. “I had a parade of losses in my personal life and we became like brothers.”

Unlike many of the series’ guest stars. Agent Pierce was not rubbed out. He just left work one day and never came back. “I played Aaron Pierce for some long that if I were to know that I was reporting to work for the final time that would have been so unpleasant and so sad,” he says. “The last time I put on Aaron’s coat, I didn’t know it was the last time so it was just another beautiful day at work.”


Related Posts

UK Performer, TV Personality Sophie Anderson Passes Away at 36

LONDON — U.K. performer, creator and TV personality Sophie Anderson has passed away at 36, industry friends and associates have confirmed. Anderson, a larger-than-life figure and inclusivity icon, parlayed her adult career into mainstream celebrity, co-starring with fellow U.K. performer Rebecca…

How to Boost Holiday Sales With Winter-Themed Sensual Products

In the world of pleasure, even the winter frost can ignite new desires. Help your customers uncover those desires, satisfy their curiosity and burn the candle of romance even brighter with winter-themed seasonal novelties and sensual products. Bring Winter Novelty…

AVN Opens Pre-Noms for 2024 Fan-Voted AVN Awards

AVN Media Network invites fans and industry members alike to pre-nominate the best and brightest adult stars in their eyes for the 2024 Fan-Voted AVN Awards, presented by MyFreeCams.

The Brazzers Way: ZZ Contract Stars Toast 20 Years

Keiran Lee calls it “one big family.”

ASACP Names A.W.Empire, iWantClips, Latin American Livecams Expo ‘Featured Sponsors’ for December

LOS ANGELES — The Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection (ASACP) has named A.W.Empire, iWantClips and Latin American Livecams Expo as its Featured Sponsors for December 2023.“Especially now during this season of giving and gratitude, ASACP appreciates the support it…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.