Kiefer Sutherland Channels Jack Bauer in New Fox Drama

Kiefer Sutherland (Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

Kiefer Sutherland (Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

Looks like ionic “24” star Kiefer Sutherland is heading back to Fox – with a new character that feels more than a little like Jack Bauer.

“I can’t confirm (the pick-up) yet, but we’re staffed and they’re writing scripts now,” network programming chief Kevin Reilly tells us. “To be honest with you, if the pilot was lousy, we wouldn’t even be having this conversation. But I think the pilot is potentially great.”

“Touch” – a new drama about a father (Sutherland) who discovers his son (David Mazouz) has psychic powers – will likely end up as a mid-season replacement.

“What I loved about this (show) is that the audience gets a lot of what they loved about Kiefer in a completely different role,” Reilly says.  “So it doesn’t feel like he is creating a paler version of what he once did.

“Fred Silverman (the only man to program NBC, CBS and ABC) once said to me ‘if you are bringing back a beloved actor, you better have some of that same stuff that the audience once liked about them.  In ‘Heat of The Night,’ he said, there was a lot of Archie Bunker in that character.  I believe there is a good dose of Jack Bauer in this new character, but he is not Jack Bauer.”

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