Yvonne Strahovski Talks 24's Potential Alliance, Shares Sarah Walker's Take on 'Naughty' Kate

24 Live Another Day PreviewEver since wrapping her five-season run on Chuck, Yvonne Strahovski has been living another day and then some, with a variety of roles on screens (small and big) and stage. But now, she faces one of her greatest challenges — earning the trust of one Jack Bauer, on Fox’s 24: Live Another Day (Mondays at 8/7c).

With Hour 5 of the 12-episode series approaching, TVLine reconnected with the Aussie beauty to survey her busy past two years, reveal the surprising way a spy comedy prepared her for 24‘s break-neck pace and ponder a revisiting of Mr. and Mrs. Bartowski.

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TVLINE | I must imagine that for an actor it can be a little scary transitioning from a long-term gig like Chuck into the great unknown. Have these past couple of years been more fulfilling than you could have expected?
I have to say I feel really blessed to have continued to have a pretty jam-packed schedule.

TVLINE | And there’s been such variety — Dexter, Broadway, you popped up on Louie and now this. You’re running the gamut.
You never know what to expect after finishing a long-term series. I was lucky that I got to do films in between seasons of Chuck. Coming out of it, one year I did a movie [I, Frankenstein], I did my Broadway debut [in the Tony-nominated Golden Boy] and then I joined Dexter. So I feel like I had my fingers in all three pies. That is the industry — theater, film and television — so it’s been really cool. Now to be part of 24, which has been so well-received…. When you bring back a show that was on for eight years and has been off the air for four, you don’t really know what to expect. It’s a vulnerable position to be in, and I think that all the producers felt the same way. But everyone’s overwhelmed by the response.

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TVLINE | But not even playing a serial killer’s serial-killing girlfriend could have prepared you for the adrenaline-pumping nature of the beast that is 24.
Funnily enough, Chuck prepared me for 24. We shot relatively fast on Chuck — we had such a low budget, we couldn’t afford to spend a lot of time on scenes back then. So in a similar situation now, 24 runs very fast. It’s something that I’m used to, in a way.

TVLINE | I imagine some of the skills you picked up on Chuck — the running and jumping, the gunplay — came in handy as well.
Definitely. I mean, I didn’t feel like I needed to go into any kind of “boot camp” training or gun training with 24 because I do already have that up my sleeve. Even though guns still make me nervous. No matter how much experience I’ll have with guns on set, things can still happen and you’ve got to be very careful.

TVLINE | Have you found yourself in awe of how24LAD-EP3_SC318_DS-9324 easily Kiefer Sutherland just slips into it all?
He powers through it all, and is really is such a pro. It’s been really awesome observing him work. He’s knows the show inside out, back to front. He knows the character. He moves at a really fast pace. Being one of the producers on the show as well, he makes changes to the script, and always admire his additions, what he puts into this show outside of just the acting. He contributes in such a smart way to this show that it’s been a nice learning curve for me to watch.

TVLINE | Was it a draw for you that CIA Agent Kate Morgan is smart, that she’s falling on the right side of things, making the right decisions?
I think what’s more the draw is the complications of her past and the relationship stuff. I’m always more interested in what’s going on between the people, what’s going on between the lines and why people do the things that they do. I liked that she kind of was left with nothing at the beginning of the season. She was basically packing up after being demoted. She’d lost her husband [who was indicted for selling state secrets] and her professional life. I liked that it gave her a starting point, somewhere to go. And in this last episode, we’re seeing this potential alliance happening between Jack Bauer and Kate Morgan, so it definitely has been a really strong journey that I liked.

TVLINE | The scandal involving her husband is touched on again this Monday by Navarro (Benjamin Bratt). How much do you think that is fueling her resolve on this particular day?
It’s definitely fueling her. That, and her naturally being good at what she does. She’s got nothing to lose, and she’s also having to prove herself to herself and to the people that she works with.
24LAD-EP5_SC520_DS-5205TVLINE | Having saved Jack from the Marines after he took hostages at the Embassy, would you say that Kate has fully earned his trust moving forward, if needed?
No. I don’t. I think given the nature of what their occupation is, it’s going to take more than that. I mean, Jack didn’t really have anything else to do. She said he didn’t have another play, which is true. So, he’s gambling as much as Kate is. She’s taking a leap of faith with Jack and Jack’s taking a leap of faith with Kate. It is kind of like a trial period. Whatever happens next, can they trust each other?

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TVLINE | We’re coming up on the halfway point soon. Will the show afford a moment here or there in the second half of the season to learn a bit more about Kate?
Definitely. All that juicy backstory stuff is continuously in play. That’s what I love about the show is that you watch it and there’s a lot of intricate sort of family things going on, or moral dilemmas…. Things like that.

TVLINE | What can you tease about the scenes you’re shooting right now in London?
Oh, man…. What can I tease….

TVLINE | Is it your perhaps most “action hero” material thus far in the series?
Yeah, I would say…. As an actor, I like when I get to do things that I’ve not done before, and there’s definitely stuff like that coming up. The suspense keeps rising and becomes more thrilling.

TVLINE | Do you have anything new lined up yet for after 24?
Officially-officially, nothing I can talk about. I know that it’s already sort of out in the press that [the murder mystery] Manhattan Nocturne is a project that I’m attached to, alongside Adrien Brody and Campbell Scott. But as for an official start date, we don’t have that yet.

TVLINE | And then of course there’s the hope that you and Zach will one day revisit Sarah and Chuck. What are the odds of that happening by, say, the year 2020?
[Laughs] Oh, man. I don’t know. I’d say by the year 2020 that maybe the odds are good — it might take that long to get it together!

TVLINE | Y’all just need to steal away for a few weeks and bang out a one-off movie or something.
Yeah, maybe. We’ll see. You never know what Zachary Levi has up his sleeve.

TVLINE | Do you think Kate and Sarah would hold each other in high regard?
Yeah, except I think Sarah would get [angry] with Kate, because Kate is a bit “naughty” and does things not by the rules. I think Sarah plays a bit more by the rules — unless she’s in Thailand looking for Chuck!

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  1. I miss Chuck and Sarah. Glad Yvonne’s doing so well, though! Bless her. Great interview, Matt!

  2. Chlojack says:

    Fantastic interview with a wonderful actress. It’s so great seeing her doing so well after Chuck, and her performance in Golden Boy was fantastic. Glad I had a chance to see her in that.

  3. Tran says:

    Couldn’t get enough Yvonne Strahovski. She’s smokin’ HOT!!

  4. Joey Padron says:

    Great interview. It’s great Yvonne get to do different stuff in her career. Hope a Chuck movie will happen someday.

  5. Diz says:

    I think I watched maybe 2 episodes of Chuck, but I don’t like her at all on 24.

  6. mc says:

    I seriously see a bit of Sarah whenever I see Kate. Maybe I just miss her.

  7. Drew says:

    I love her. I want a Chuck movie and I think they could even do something fun on a small budget. That said, 24 is ridiculous. A big step down in quality between Chuck and Dexter, and this. I hope that she gets another show soon… One that I can stand to watch.
    Seriously, how many truly great shows were canceled way too early and deserve to come back way more than 24? Or Heroes for that matter? It’s frustrating.

    • Justin says:

      Maybe to you, but a lot of people including me love 24. I found Chuck to be pretty corny. I love this actress and am glad she is on 24.

    • Pat D. says:

      Look, I found Chuck’s early seasons to be quite good, but seriously—they in no way, shape or form are on the same level as classic 24.

      Now, if you were referring to Live Another Day, yeah, its not as strong (so far) as prime 24, but compared to Yvonne’s last Dexter season, its practically “The Wire”.

      • Pat D. says:

        One thing—I did not mean to infer that it was Yvonne’s fault that Dexter stunk so terribly in its final season—the writing was so awful that even a talented actress (like her) didn’t have a chance.

        • Chlojack says:

          Yeah, the final season of Dexter was terrible and they totally mishandled Hannah’s character in season 8. Dexter made it clear in the season 7 finale that Hannah was dangerous and could never be trusted. Having her come back for revenge was the only storyline that would have made sense for her in season 8.

  8. Lev says:

    I’ve found 24 entertaining, although I would not have watched it without Yvonne being in it. It is like an old school action movie every week. The London setting is interesting and I hope will be brought into it more as the weeks go by. I watched the first season of 24 and really enjoyed it back in the day, but mid 2nd season I stopped. It is for sure a throwback kind of show that doesn’t feel modern, but its good enough. I just want to continue to see her get work and it is about time that some producer/network realizes she can be and should be the star of a show and build something around her – something with a bit of a comedic touch to it. Yvonne’s talent screams STAR to me – I hope she finds the vehicle to be that.

    • Chlojack says:

      Totally agree with this comment. She’d be fantastic as the lead in her own series, especially one with a comedic element. Loved her appearance on Louie and wish she’d do more comedy.

  9. kajar says:

    Glad she’s working steadily. Lovely lady and talented actress. *sigh* Miss Chuck.

  10. Lou says:

    “unless she’s in Thailand looking for Chuck!” Ha, man I miss this show.

  11. James D says:

    I adore Yvonne and I adored Chuck, and i miss seeing them together so much. I would literally see a chuck movie a hundred times in the theaters even if it was sub-par just because I loved the show so much. I’m enjoying her a lot on 24 depending how this ends i wouldn’t be apposed if they brought the show back permanently and made her the new Jack Bauer. I find it interesting that she has something lined up but can’t talk about it could that possibly mean where going to get a Ms Marvel popping up soon in MCU you know how Marvel studios likes to keep things quite, and she would be a perfect as Carol Danvers. I Know the current Ms Marvel is Pakistani but maybe she could be a mentor figure or something.

  12. moses says:

    she is awsome,Great job kate morgan

  13. Josh says:

    Love her so much.

    Plus her officially offically nothing to talk about makes me hope she’s keeping mum about a Marvel project called “Captain Marvel”. She’d be the perfect Carol Danvers.

  14. I miss Chuck so much I like to imagine Kate Morgan is Sarah Walker’s new alias. Yeah that means Chuck was apparently caught selling stuff to the Chinese but for now I’ll imagine he was framed.

  15. Apples says:

    She brought me over to 24, it’s like Sarah walker in another life. If the 24 franchise keeps going, I’d love to see her take over the lead role from Sutherland who is getting too old.

  16. Sawyer says:

    I love 24. I did not know who the actress was, playing Kate, she is awesome. Never watched Chuck. I hope she is the new Jack Bauer.

  17. Joeseph Mendoza says:

    Chuck Movie Please!!!

  18. Kris says:

    OK Whoever said Kiefer is getting too old, STFU. No offense, I like Kate but COME ON. 24 will never be 24 without Kiefer DAMMIT

  19. I love Sarah and Kate. They both have so much to their characters that it’s just amazing to see them in action. But that last question though. The fact that she mentioned Thailand is just beautiful. Yvonne Strahovski you are queen.

  20. Jeremy says:

    Great interview. Kate is a dynamic character portrayed by Yvonne who is a truly blessed and talented actress. Can’t wait for Manhattan Nocturne (if they keep the title) to hit big screen but Chuck should happen before 2020. I’ve got faith.

  21. Yvonne is great on everything she does. Watching 24 because of her. Still hoping for a Chuck movie with Yvonne and Zack.

  22. Yvonne’s been excellent in the last 2 episodes of 24. When she’s told by Navarro that she has to leave anyway was wow. I think she was outstanding in Dexter Season 7. The prison scene with Dexter in the S7 finale was class. Less said about season 8 the better. Barring 2-3 episodes, everyone including Michael C. hall stunk in it.

    • V G says:

      I blame the writers for Dexter. He’s fine as a complicated villain protagonist but I can’t forgive the writers and Showtime for not having him get caught and tried in the last season. They could have turned the tension and stakes up for Dexter and everyone in his life and instead we got the S8 we got.

  23. Anthony Chatman says:

    Yvonne is so great on 24. I never watched Chuck. And I kinda think comparing that show to 24 is a big stretch because the elements are completely different than 24. I have to disagree with those that said 24 has been stale so far because if you had watched all seasons leading up to LAD you would know how hard this show goes in. And as far as Kate having her own show if Jack can’t continue since he’s “old” then I guess that would work for me. But I don’t think people would buy into it as much because Jack wouldn’t be in it. If anything I’d say give it a chance on a Netflix series run. Cuz if it’s on TV ratings are gonna rape it out the butt. It won’t even last. But that’s just my opinion. Kate is the young Jack Bauer and I can’t wait to see the team up in next week’s episode. It’s gonna be so EPIC!!

  24. V G says:

    Loved her on Chuck and I like her character on 24 so far. I’m hoping she isn’t going to be the mole.

  25. “unless she’s in Thailand looking for Chuck!”

    True that.

  26. Arica Thomas says:

    Wait a minute! Take a second a realize that Sarah walker got her memory back! She remembers Thailand!!!!! Yay!!!! All is right in the world!