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What the cast of 24 is doing today

On November 6, 2001, the Fox series 24 arrived on the airwaves, and throughout nine seasons and 200-plus episodes, it earned the distinction of becoming the longest-running U.S.-based espionage-themed show in television history. Led by Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer, an intrepid secret agent employed by Los Angeles' Counter Terrorism Unit (or CTU), 24 became a television legend thanks to its incredibly creative framework; each 24-episode season was set over the course of one (always insanely eventful) day in Bauer's life, with each individual episode taking place "in real time," or over the course of one hour. The series ended its original run in 2010, but in the years since, it's spawned multiple spinoffs, including 24: Live Another Day and 24: Legacy.

Throughout the course of Jack Bauer's 24 story, a huge variety of characters make their way in and out of his life, from family to trusted co-workers as well as various presidents and suspected terrorists. As such, the cast of 24 included some pretty huge Hollywood names, all centered around Sutherland's career-defining performance. Here's what has happened to some of 24's biggest stars since the show came to a close. Spoilers for the entirety of 24 to follow!

Elisha Cuthbert

Though it might seem like Jack Bauer is solely fixated on saving the world from different terrorist threats, his family is of the utmost importance to him. After the season one murder of his wife Teri Bauer (Leslie Hope) at the hands of his colleague Nina Myers (Sarah Clarke), Jack's daughter Kim Bauer, played by Elisha Cuthbert, becomes his sole purpose beyond CTU. Kim's self-preservation instincts aren't always on point — fans still make fun of the truly weird season two subplot leaving her caught in a cougar trap in the woods of Los Angeles — but she proves a loving daughter. Cuthbert remained a series regular for the first three seasons, making guest appearances later on and even eventually working as a fellow agent at CTU. Aside from Jack, Kim is the only character to appear in both the first and final season.

Cuthbert cut her teeth on this dramatic role, but her resume contains mostly comedic work beyond 24. During her time on 24, Cuthbert appeared in feature films like Old School and The Girl Next Door (in 2003 and 2004, respectively), and after the series ended, she joined the cast of the cult comedy Happy Endings along with Adam Pally, Casey Wilson, Eliza Coupe, Damon Wayans Jr., and Zachary Knighton. Unfortunately, due to low ratings, the well-loved but little-watched show was canceled in 2013 after only three seasons, but Cuthbert recovered well, picking up guest spots and projects until she landed a starring role in in 2016 in Netflix's The Ranch alongside Ashton Kutcher and Sam Elliott for the show's entire four-season run.

Mary Lynn Rajskub

Jack had plenty of great co-workers throughout his tenure at CTU, but his most invaluable and loyal cohort was arguably Chloe O'Brian, who made her first appearance in the show's first season and stuck around for the entire remainder of the run. Played to perfection by Mary Lynn Rajskub, Chloe is the perfect right-hand man for Jack, showing nerves of steel and undying fealty to her boss and colleague, staying behind at CTU headquarters to correspond with Jack and show off her extraordinary computing skills. Often socially awkward, Chloe is one of 24's most vital characters despite her shyness — in season five, it's revealed that she's the only person who knows Jack is actually alive after he fakes his own death, proving that she's truly indispensable to both Jack and the CTU.

In addition to her longtime dramatic role in 24, Rajskub is a trained comedic talent; as well as sketch comedies like Mr. Show (which starred Bob Odenkirk and David Cross) and Kelsey Grammer's The Sketch Show, she also appeared on The Larry Sanders Show from 1996 to 1998 and has performed stand-up on shows with comedians like John Oliver. Modern comedy fans likely know her from her guest appearances as "Gail the Snail" on It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and rom-com lovers might remember her from her supporting roles in films like Sweet Home Alabama and Julie & Julia

Kim Raver

After losing his wife in the first season, Jack Bauer occasionally finds time to date (somehow), and the list of his not-so-lucky girlfriends includes Audrey Raines (later Audrey Bourdeau), as played by Kim Raver. Jack's longest-running love interest, Audrey joined the show in its fourth season, as the daughter of Jack's boss President James Heller (William Devane), and dating Jack proved pretty dangerous for her, even leaving her in a catatonic state at the end of the sixth season. Though she eventually recovered and returned for 24: Live Another Day in 2014, Audrey was eventually shot and killed, leaving Jack in mourning.

Raver is known mostly for her television work, including leading roles in Lipstick Jungle, The Nine, Ray Donovan, and even a stint on Designated Survivor, which reunited her with Kiefer Sutherland. However, many avid TV fans probably know her from her on-again, off-again part as the talented and tough Dr. Teddy Altman on Shonda Rhimes' Grey's Anatomy, a role she has returned to several times throughout the show's long run.

Dennis Haysbert

As 24 kicks off its first season, Jack Bauer is tasked with protecting a California senator whose life is suddenly in danger during his presidential campaign — specifically, David Palmer, played by Dennis Haysbert. Jack does his job and Palmer survives, eventually serving as the 24 universe's first African-American President during the second and third seasons, supporting Bauer and the CTU by giving them as much freedom as possible to investigate and take down suspected and confirmed terrorists. However, in the first few minutes of the show's fifth season, former President Palmer is shot and killed by an assassin, resulting in one of the show's most devastating losses.

Haysbert is an accomplished actor on screens of all sizes, but you might know him best from his long-running stint as the comforting Allstate spokesman, a job he's held since 2004. On the big screen, Haysbert has appeared in everything from Waiting to Exhale to Love & Basketball to Jarhead and Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, and he also led the cast of CBS' The Unit from 2006 to 2009. 

Cherry Jones

24 made a lot of progressive leaps during its time on the air; in a pre-Barack Obama world, the show elected an African-American senator as President, and in the seventh and eighth seasons, it gave viewers the first female President: Allison Taylor, played by Cherry Jones. A tough but fair leader, President Taylor was forced into some pretty grisly decisions by the end of her debut season; after refusing to back down when faced with terrorist opposition, her family was in serious jeopardy, with her son murdered, her daughter in jail, and her husband in critical condition. 

Jones was the perfect choice to play such a wise leader; throughout her career, she's made a habit of playing strong, inscrutable women. A Broadway legend who's appeared in everything from Doubt to Angels in America and The Glass Menagerie, she's racked up an impressive list of small-screen credits beyond 24, though Allison Taylor was the role that netted Jones her first Emmy, for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama in 2009. Beyond her starring role in NBC's 2012 series Awake, Jones has appeared in shows such as Transparent, Black Mirror, 11.22.63, Succession, and Hulu's award-winning The Handmaid's Tale, which earned Jones her second Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actress in 2019.

Kiefer Sutherland

As Jack Bauer, Kiefer Sutherland served as the central focus of the show, with an hour of his life chronicled throughout each episode of its nine seasons — and as loyal fans of 24 know, Jack had some seriously crappy days throughout its run. No matter how dire Jack's situation often seemed as he fought terrorists for the CTU, viewers could count on him always getting back up to fight another day, and Sutherland's tough-as-nails demeanor and signature growl defined the show as a whole.

During his time on 24, Sutherland stayed incredibly busy, appearing in films like 2002's Phone Booth (with Colin Farrell) and 2004's Taking Lives (with Angelina Jolie). After the show ended, he showed up in everything from 2011's Melancholia to 2014's Pompeii and 2017's remake of Flatliners. Sutherland reprised his role as Jack Bauer in the television films 24: Redemption and 24: Live Another Day in 2008 and 2014, respectively, and from 2016 to 2019, he took on another leading network role as Thomas Kirkman in Designated Survivor, playing a politician elevated to President after a doomed State of the Union address.

Sean Astin

Lynn McGill, as played by Sean Astin, might have only appeared in one season of 24, but his brave sacrifice made him one of the show's most memorable supporting characters. Though he first seemed like an uptight jerk who would take management positions within the government only to fire everybody in his new department, McGill ended up working with Jack and his team during a crisis in the fifth season that saw a fatal gas pumped into the CTU headquarters. After several of his charges were killed, McGill left a safe haven to go into a control room and allow Chloe O'Brian (Mary Lynn Rajskub) to manipulate the computer system, which led to his death but prevented more staff members from dying.

After rising to fame thanks to his work in the title role of Rudy and as part of the ensemble cast of The Goonies, Astin made a career for himself as an adult actor by playing supportive, generous characters, the most famous of which is the endlessly loyal Samwise Gamgee in Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings trilogy. After 24, Astin appeared in the second season of Netflix's 1980s nostalgia-fest Stranger Things as good guy Bob Newby, eventually meeting a particularly grisly end while saving the people he loves.

Jean Smart

Martha Logan was one of 24's most formidable First Ladies. The wife of President Charles Logan (Gregory Itzin), she struggled with mental illness while representing the United States on a national stage. The role required a versatile talent; luckily, Jean Smart was up to the job. During her tenure as First Lady, Martha relied on medication and even spent time in an institution, but beyond that, her strength was evident to those around her — including President David Palmer, with whom she shared a close relationship.

Smart received Emmy nods for her role as Martha Logan in 2006 and 2007 for Best Supporting Actress and Outstanding Guest Actress, respectively, and the rest of her resume is as accomplished as you might expect. If you're a classic sitcom fan, you probably caught Smart during her run on Frasier (for which she won two Emmy Awards) or leading turn in Designing Women; on the big screen, she's appeared in everything from Sweet Home Alabama to Garden State to A Simple Favor. However, Smart is most prolific on the small screen; over the years, she's starred in prestige projects like FX's Fargo, network comedies like Samantha Who?, sci-fi shows like Legion, and big budget adaptations like HBO's Watchmen

Colm Feore

President Allison Taylor (Cherry Jones) had a strong yet supportive First Gentleman in Henry Taylor, played by Colm Feore. During President Taylor's tenure, Henry had to prove that his son was murdered and didn't kill himself, recover from a nearly fatal shooting, and watch his daughter go to jail for murder, the latter of which drove an understandably enormous wedge between Henry and President Taylor.

Feore was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, but he's mostly known for his Canadian resume, thanks to the fact that his dramatic training took place in Montreal. Feore rose to prominence up North by playing former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau in the 2002 miniseries Trudeau, but you've probably seen him in other high-profile projects. Over the years, Feore has appeared in films like Pearl Harbor, The Chronicles of Riddick, Chicago, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, and The Amazing Spider-Man 2, among others. His television roles are equally as impressive; beyond Trudeau and 24, Feore boasts stints on The Borgias, House of Cards, The Umbrella Academy, and more. 

Bob Gunton

Throughout its run, 24 featured plenty of presidents, and with those presidents came cabinets populated by characters like Ethan Kanin (played by Bob Gunton). Throughout his run on 24, Kanin first appeared as President Wayne Palmer's (DB Woodside) Secretary of Defense in the sixth season, later serving as Chief of Staff and Secretary of State under President Allison Taylor (Cherry Jones), despite internal drama in the administration.

Gunton is known for much more than his role on 24, having made his mark in film and television by playing particularly strict characters — most notably authoritarian tyrants in The Shawshank Redemption, Demolition Man, and Patch Adams. Beyond the screen, Gunton is an accomplished stage actor who originated the role of President Juan Peron in the original Broadway run of Evita, playing alongside Patti LuPone (eventually earning a Tony nomination for the role). Other than 24, one of his most notable television roles was on Netflix's Daredevil, where he played Leland Owlsley, also known as "The Owl."

Peter MacNicol

Though Peter MacNicol only appeared in one season of 24 during its original run, he left an indelible mark on the series thanks to his excellent pedigree as a character actor. During the show's sixth season, MacNicol played Tom Lennox, the Chief of Staff to President Wayne Palmer (DB Woodside), who succeeded his late brother David Palmer (Dennis Haysbert) as President in the aftermath of his brother's assassination. After convincing Wayne Palmer to run for office, Lennox lost favor with the remaining Palmer family and got involved in some fairly shady government situations. 

MacNicol, who later reprised his role as Tom Lennox in 24: Redemption, has built an impressive career in television. After taking roles on Chicago Hope and Ally McBeal (the latter of which earned him an Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy), MacNicol appeared on Numb3rs and Grey's Anatomy before his time on 24, eventually earning another Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actor in honor of his work on HBO's hit comedy Veep.  

Penny Johnson Jerald

During his rise to power, President David Palmer benefits from a calming and supportive presence by his side, provided by Penny Johnson Jerald. Sherry Palmer watches her husband move from the Senate to the office of President. After the first season, Sherry and President Palmer get divorced, but her role in the 24 universe doesn't end there; without her ex-husband's knowledge, Sherry helps Jack Bauer fight against a conspiracy effort in the second season, and she helps President Palmer once again in the third season.

Before 24, Jerald was likely best known for her supporting appearances in projects such as The Larry Sanders Show and ER, as well as a vital role in The Color of Friendship and guest spots in hit shows like Frasier and The Practice. After appearing in Castle for almost 80 episodes, Jerald moved on to a leading role in the Seth MacFarlane-led The Orville.