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Fresh Faces on ''24''

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After scoring Emmy nods for his stints on both ER and Six Feet Under, James Cromwell will play a recurring role as Jack Bauer’s father on the upcoming season of 24, which bows Jan. 14. And while he’s not the first actor to discover the boost a great TV gig can give you, this season everyone seems to be looking for it on the same dang show. Check out the cast list for the sixth season of Fox’s Kiefer Sutherland actioner: Peter MacNicol (moonlighting from Numb3rs) and Regina King (Ray) are signed as new regulars; Chad Lowe and Harold & Kumar‘s Kal Penn will guest. (Eddie Izzard was scheduled but has since been replaced by Everybody Loves Raymond‘s David Hunt.) So how does 24 suck in the talent? ”A lot of them are fans themselves,” says executive producer Howard Gordon, who adds that the show is careful to pick strong actors, not just big names. ”It’s a combination of the material, the reputation — I don’t think the Emmys hurt us any.” And hey, if an actor gets bored, it ain’t hard to kill him off.