"It was one of the greatest gifts of a lifetime," Kiefer Sutherland tells PEOPLE of his role as Jack Bauer in Fox's 24

By Christina Dugan
August 08, 2020 12:00 PM
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Credit: Taylor Hill/FilmMagic

Ten years after the Fox's 24 ended, series star Kiefer Sutherland says he's open to reprising his role as Jack Bauer.

In this week's issue of PEOPLE, the actor, 53, opened up about his new role as Detective Clay Bryce in Quibi's The Fugitive and what it would take for a Bauer return.

"If someone were to come up with a great idea, whether that's a great two-hour idea to make a film, or if it's a great season idea, I'm always open to that," Sutherland, 53, says. "I love playing that character. I love that show. I love the people that I've worked with on it."

"It was one of the greatest gifts of a lifetime," he continues. "As long as I felt capable of delivering and improving the legacy of the show, then I would always be open to it. And at this point in my life, I am. Making a television show or making a film is a team sport and requires all of the players to get back together. So, we'll see what happens."

Reflecting on his time spent on the show, Sutherland — who portrayed the former federal agent for eight seasons — says the series changed his life on "so many levels."

Kiefer Sutherland
Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer
| Credit: Ray Mickshaw/FOX

"I think the most intimate one is, I've got a picture of my daughter at the age of 11 in her school uniform, who came to visit me after school on a set," he recalls. "In the final season, I got a picture of myself with her in her cap and gown from graduating at NYU. So, it encompassed that period of time. It was the closest I've ever had to a steady job. So I could plan my life around what was happening with my family, as opposed to, 'Oops, just got a film, got to go do it. I'll see you, I'll be back in three months, I've got to go to New Zealand.' So on those levels, it was transformative."

"On a professional level, I learned more about playing the same character, that changes over an eight-year period, than I learned any other time in my life," he says. "It was just the gift of a lifetime."

Kiefer Sutherland
Kiefer Sutherland in The Fugitive
| Credit: Richard Foreman/Quibi

For now, Sutherland is focusing on his new project — an adaptation of the 1963 television series and the 1993 film — and hopes fans will resonate with the story.

"Here's a guy who's being prosecuted on the news, on social media to the degree that an entire city is after a guy who hasn't done what he's being accused of doing, and you're going to root for him," he says. "And what I can promise you is, that this is not a slow ride."

"This is a roller coaster," Sutherland adds. "This is not a Ferris wheel. And, and if that's what you're into, I hope you like it."

The Fugitive is now streaming on Quibi.