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Thursday, May 20, 2010

24 Days of "24": Chloe Speaks!

Chloe O’Brian herself, Mary Lynn Rajskub, talked to the media via conference call today about the “24” finale and the show’s legacy…

Several media members on the call had actually seen the finale, which made me a little jealous that for whatever reason I didn’t make the cut. But it also led to some juicy tidbits—one of which was so juicy, I’m leaving it out…

Here’s some of what Mary Lynn had to say…

On why “24” worked: “I think that’s exactly what the producers have talked about in the different press panels and things that I’ve read and talked about. They didn’t think it was going to go, and I think that’s exactly the reason why it did go because it was original. It was different. It was well done. It was a passionate project, and if you were around at every level from the producers and the writers to the camera crew to Kiefer, those are all key players that set the tone and the passion to make this concept that could’ve been a terrible idea.

It could have really fallen apart, but instead turned into this wonderful thing that, okay, two years, three years, five years in it’s like, okay, we’ve got to do this 24-hour concept again and make it fresh. I think that’s part of, viewers can feel that, that it’s challenging them, and it has the familiarity with all the plot lines that they burn through and all the characters that died. That’s the thing that holds it is this concept that you know it’s on this time clock and how’re they going to make it work and how’re they going to make this fresh again. I think that’s kept it exciting all this time.”

On whether Chloe will be in the movie: “Well, I hope so for gosh sake. I’ve not heard much, but I am very much hoping that I will be involved. I think that could be very interesting to see how that happens. How are they going to make it into a film? I have no idea, and I’ve not talked to anybody about that. I know that Kiefer’s really excited. I did an interview for Extra TV yesterday, and he told me that Kiefer told him that there were three movies. They’re planning on three, and so I always kind of get my news from what has already been said in the press.

In that regard I’m sure you guys know more than me, so please let me know if you hear that I’m in the movie. Please call me at home any time day or night. Yes, I’m kind of out of the loop, but I think it could be interesting and a creative challenge to see how they would handle that.”

On her favorite Chloe moment: “I’ve been getting a lot of those kinds of questions lately, and I have more fun kind of coming up with a moment that’s in my memory. I’ve twittered that, and then I get back like 12 moments that the fans remember that I didn’t even remember. Certainly, having the gun and having to be on the run and on location was great. Edgar’s death is something that people remember, and that was a very kind of a turning point I think for my character, watching him die was hard. I’ve just liked it better and better, and it’s all kind of a big mush in my head, but this year it’s been a whole new set of things which is amazing that there’s so much left to explore in having those extra responsibilities and weighty questions of how to deal with. That was a whole new set of cool moments.”

On whether she’s ever had to fight for Chloe’s life: “No, and I think that’s kind of funny you should say that. I think it’s worked in my favor that I haven’t fought for stuff. I’ve kind of hoped for stuff, but I’ve been pretty hands-off. I was not one of the people who walked up to the producers’ rooms and knocked on the doors and had big conversations. I was very impressed that Carlos did that, maybe a little bit jealous, like he just talked them into making his character come back to life. I thought that was pretty ballsy and pretty awesome, but I’m very happy with what’s happened to my character. There have been certain years maybe where I wish I would’ve been able to do more, but at the same time, I was very happy that I kind of was always that anchor in CTU. I don’t feel bad about maybe leaving them wanting more as well as wanting more myself, but I think this year I’ve gotten to do a lot that I didn’t before which is great.”

On whether her relationship with Kiefer has changed like Chloe’s relationship with Jack: “Good question. I’m afraid I might have a disappointing answer, not really. I was going to say because my relationship with Kiefer has kind of remarkably been the same that it’s been since I met him which is on set when he’s playing Jack Bauer very intense, a little bit scary, keeps you on the edge of your toes, immediately just a very impressive guy in terms of his commitment to the story and making it good and keeping the pace. I was probably a little bit more scared of him when I first started than I ended up being, so that would be a change because he’s a sweetheart.

He helped me get over, there was a hump sort of. I talked about it a lot from being a computer geek in CTU to then helping Jack. What was I talking about? Sorry. He helped me with the emotional stuff and the high intensity that I had never done before, like when I had to look at his computer screen and kind of be watching my friend being hurt. I told him that I was really nervous to do that, and he stood off camera. He coached me through that to help me to kind of how he talked as if I was watching what was happening on the screen. You know what I’m saying and helped me be a better actor and learn how to do that.”

On whether she was ever concerned that Chloe would die: “I like that choice of words, significantly concerned. Using that word I would say no. I was not ever significantly concerned, but I would sometimes out of nowhere have a little panic, like, oh God, what if die? I think for the first few years, like I said, it was more a worry of just being picked up again because they could’ve easily have just phased me out too. That’s the beauty of “24.” It’s only one day. They could come back the next season and just not have me there.

That was a great blessing and compliment to me that they’d have me back in the place where I worked where they would have a whole new staff almost every year. That was exciting. I maybe stupidly, naively believed that I wouldn’t get killed because I was in CTU, but we all know bad things happen in CTU, so maybe I falsely believed that I wouldn’t, but then again not because I’m still here.”

And now a little finale scoop…

At one point during the call, David Martindale with Hearst Newspapers asked this: “In Jack’s big speech at the end he tells Chloe how he never dreamed when she first showed up how important she would be to him. I was wondering if you can relate to what your expectations were, you as Mary Lynn Rajskub, the actress, when you first showed up on the set? In retrospect are you surprised as Jack was?”

Her was her answer: “It kind of mirrors real life in that way because when he says that speech to me that was exactly how I felt about this whole job. I had no idea when I started, and I think that’s kind of truthful to what the character has been and what this job has been for me, starting out with four episodes and then six episodes and thinking I was going to be fired. I’m just the geeky computer tech weird kind of by-the-book girl when I first started, but people were really annoyed because they people in their office that you remind me of this annoying person that works in my office with me to then be Jack’s most loyal helper for lack of a better word that’s not coming to my mind, the confidant and friend. It’s been pretty amazing and unexpected for sure.”

Photo Credit: Kelsey McNeal/FOX