Every week, actor Dan Bucatinsky, who plays CTU analyst Andy Shalowitz, a.k.a. the new Chloe O’Brian, will take EW readers behind the scenes of the action-packed 24: Legacy with his blog. Here, he takes us into episode 110, “10:00 PM – 11:00 PM.” Take it away, Dan!
HERE’S WHAT WILL BRIEFLY CATCH YOU UP (but you really should see it all to believe it): Remember how the whole show (meaning this whole DAY) is premised on these army rangers who had been on a mission to kill Bin-Khalid in Yemen, and now his people are back and looking to create greater destruction? Well, sure, one of their cells blew up the Washington Bridge. But guess what? Bin-Khalid wasn’t killed!! He was burned and blinded and lost an eye — which, as far as I’m concerned, I mean, what’s the point, right? But he wanted to come back and see his son, Jadalla (now dead), and get revenge on the mastermind of the operation in Yemen: Rebecca Ingram!
HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED THIS WEEK: Okay. So. The cat and mouse game continues now that the terrorists have Rebecca in their possession. Back at CTU, their speculation is growing that Rebecca did in fact seeBin-Khalid, whose body had never been found after the Army Rangers’ mission in Yemen. Of course, we saw him and the amazing make-up job depicting his scorched face, of which I posted photos in my last blog.
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Andy is digging into the DNI files but discovers they are mysteriously remote-erasing as he’s trying to recover them. However, he does see a photo of a young Arab girl. Mullins’ leadership is being undermined when the Director of Intelligence, Simms, sends this new short, bald guy, Daniel Pang, over to “help him” (that’s code for making sure nobody gets access to the secrets Simms is hiding). Keith is visibly rattled as Pang insists on sitting at Keith’s desk — in his office. Poor Keith has to choke back a school-girl whimper…I mean, what’s next? Pang stealing his lunch money and stuffing him in a locker? Andy notices and needs to confer with Keith “in private!”
They zipped up Jadalla in a body bag. So, no chance of HIM coming back. A dazed Senator Donovan confronts Carter on the creepy, abandoned football field. Stress levels are high…if only everyone could just take a breather. But, as you know, we only have an hour each week to get as much done as is humanly possible. So that means Andy won’t be getting that giant gouge in his leg stitched up until, well, at least tomorrow…
Andy brings Carter up to speed on“East July,” Director Simms’ plan kidnap Naseri’s 10-year old daughter as leverage to deliver Bin-Khalid. Clearly it didn’t work. But the only way to get more information is to access Simms’ computer in the PENTAGON. Good luck, Carter!
Rebecca is tied up in the back of a van, listening to Bin-Khalid and Naseri plan her public execution — to be streamed online. I mean, if ever there was a time you would WANT your Wi-Fi to cut out… but Rebecca’s not having any of it. She breaks a bottle and jabs broken glass into her wrist…
At the Intelligence Headquarters, Simms’ meeting is interrupted by a call from Senator Donovan who is on his way for an in-person visit, followed by Carter dressed as his Secret Service agent. So handy to keep a suit in the back of, well, every car and truck Carter jumps into…
Before Donovan and Carter enter, Director Simms plugs into a video feed of the young girl. Who better to “clean up” this situation but Tony Almeida? Though I don’t think his kind of work involves a Swiffer and a vacuum.
The terrorist team finds Rebecca bleeding in the back of the van. If she dies before their public execution, then they gave up John Donovan for nothing.
With a little help from the masterful team of Mariana and Andy at CTU, they work up credentials to get Carter through security at the Pentagon. Once inside, Carter is able to force enough information out of Simms to know the location of the farmhouse where Naseri’s daughter is being held. She will make for a great negotiating tactic in the effort to regain Rebecca. But Simms insists that Carter will not find her there. We already know that Almeida is on his way to retrieve the girl and deliver her elsewhere. So when Carter bolts, and Simms has Donovan to himself, he suggests that Rebecca played her part in the kidnapping a year ago.
Back with the terrorist crew, Rebecca is weak on the ground, with Naseri preparing her to die publicly — an atonement for her kidnapping crime. He clearly doesn’t know his daughter is still alive.
Andy and Eric run a slick operation just like old times with a bunch of CTU jargon, of course: “Data-mining the dossier… Overriding the firewall… It’s GPS-encrypted… Mask the bandwidth by spreading it through different sockets… Mirror the satellite real-time to your phone.” Did anybody get that?
But Almeida and his crew show up to the house for Naseri’s daughter before she and Carter can get out. It’s a race against time. Wait. Duh. So Donovan threatens Simms, demanding he call off Almeida but Simms refuses and Donovan pistol-whips him. Who saw that coming? And at CTU Mullins senses Pang is about to figure out the jig is up and proves he’s more than capable of putting Pang in a choke hold! Everyone’s going rogue.
Almeida arrives at the door to the farmhouse where Carter is protecting the girl, and demands he release her or face the consequences. Cha-tung. Cha-tung. Cha-tung. End of hour.
WHAT YOU COULDN’T KNOW: In the scene where Carter and Donovan storm Simms’ office and get him to unlock the flash drive, there was a typo in the script where Andy was supposed to refer to a “PI address” he needs Carter to access. When I read it, I learned it, as I do all the CTU jargon. I have had to learn to play a role of an analyst in areas I know NOTHING about. I mean, I know what an IP address is… but what’s a PI address? Well. Guess it’s above my paygrade. Not really. We did take after take — as written in the script — and only in post-production did everyone realize it was a typo and SHOULD have been “IP address.” I fixed it in ADR (automated dialogue replacement) or “looping,” which is when we go back to a studio to re-record audio from shows.
When Teddy Sears (Mullins) had to work out the choke-hold scene with Daniel Pang in his office, they had some help from the stunt team at 24: Legacy. But Teddy is pretty method. He couldn’t help but really choke him in every take. He’s also a really big guy. So naturally, there were some takes where the actor who played Pang (C.S. Lee) was visibly red and sweaty from the scuffle… but of course, always ended up laughing as they struggled back from the couch and onto the floor.
The young actress who played Ara (Seanna Pereira) learned all of the Arabic she needed to know to do the scenes she did in 111 in less than 30 minutes! That’s some badass language skills. Plus, she’s a very sweet and talented actress. Wait until you see her in the season finale! Great, emotional stuff!
In between takes, when the crew was on other stages, the actors loved playing around in the CTU set. All the chairs had swivel wheels so we’d have races. And we played around as much as we could. Just blowing off steam:
As Andy, I always knew that I’d be spending a lot of time at a computer monitor, talking into my headset. But never did I imagine the kind of episode like 111! I had one conversation with Carter in my headset, another with Donovan on my cell phone, and at one point picked up the old-fashioned landline to connect with DCPD (the troopers following the terrorists). It was a lot to figure out where information was coming and to whom I was speaking. Especially because we shot all of my stuff back-to-back in a row… without any other actors there to play with! It was intense, and I had to Google a lot of jargon to figure out what Andy was doing. But on a show like 24, even the computer nerds with headsets can be heroes!
24: Legacy airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET.