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Kiefer Sutherland Shares His Experience Working With Chris Pine In The Contractor - Exclusive

Kiefer Sutherland and Chris Pine have both forged impressive careers in Hollywood where they've each taken on a variety of noteworthy roles. Sutherland has been a reliable presence in movies and on TV since the 1980s, starring in everything from the beloved coming-of-age tale "Stand By Me" to the cult hit "Dark City" to the fan-favorite series "24." Meanwhile, Pine is best known for his work in the "Star Trek" reboot movies and the "Wonder Woman" series, but he has still made time for acclaimed smaller films like "Hell or High Water."

Given those formidable backgrounds, it's especially exciting to watch the pair collide in the thriller "The Contractor." Pine stars as James Harper, a Special Forces Sergeant who, after being unceremoniously discharged from the Army, thinks he's found his salvation when he takes a job at a private military contracting company run by Sutherland's Rusty, a confident and charismatic fellow veteran. The characters meet in a crackling scene where Rusty quickly convinces Harper to join his operation by forging a connection with him over their shared experience with the military. "The Contractor" includes plenty of action, but in this scene, the fireworks come entirely from a conversation between two actors working at the top of their games. In anĀ exclusive interview, Sutherland spoke to Looper about this scene and what he enjoyed about sharing the screen with Pine in "The Contractor."

Sutherland enjoyed creating scenes with Pine

Kiefer Sutherland noted that much of the power of the first meeting between Rusty and Harper has its roots in a stellar screenplay, observing, "The script was so beautifully written, so 99% of the work is done, and I really do have to tip my hat to that."

Yet he also appreciated what Chris Pine brought to the scene and how he thought about it in terms of what it meant within the larger context of the story of "The Contractor." "The thing that I enjoyed working with Chris so much for is that he has an incredible interest about not just how to be authentic from sentence to sentence, but what is the outcome of this scene, and how is it going to impact the outcome of the next scene and the next scene." Sutherland shared. "He's got a very strong overview of what the material is, but also what he wants to extract from it."

Sutherland revealed that he and Pine worked together to ensure that their scenes hit exactly the right notes. "At the end of that very first scene with us, we want the audience to believe that [Harper]'s found the perfect world, that he's found a new family. ... They all have this commonality, this understanding of what it was to be trained to be ultimate soldiers and how we're going to take care of each other now," Sutherland explained.

"We worked together to do that, and it's not just going to happen. We're going to actually focus on his reaction to this, and 'What do you need from me? Do you need me to hit that line harder? Is that going to help you do this?' There was a working together between he and I and ["The Contractor" director] Tarik [Saleh] that I just really enjoyed," added Sutherland. "It was really communicative, and you can always tell when an actor is really interested and excited by what they're doing, and I felt that he really was. That becomes infectious, and I got excited about what I'm doing. I loved working with him."

"The Contractor" is now playing in select theaters, and is also available on demand and for digital purchase.