William Devane moves to higher office on ’24: Live Another Day’

William Devane as President James Heller in 24: Live Another Day
William Devane as President James Heller in 24: Live Another Day

Devane says he tries to build conflict in his roles. “You always try to find the argument,” he explained. “As [director] Elia Kazan said, ‘If you can’t find the argument you can’t find the play.’ ”

So when Devane first met with the producers, he told them he was interested in playing a president “that doesn’t want to be president, he can’t handle it,” said the actor over the phone from London where he’s been filming “Live Another Day” since January.

The producers had come up with an even better conflict — Heller’s in the early stages of Alzheimer’s.

Executive producers Manny Coto and Evan Katz were plotting out the 12-part series last year when they thought of bringing back Devane.

“First, we wanted Audrey in the show,” said Katz. “And separately we wanted a president that was affected with early Alzheimer’s. We just had a brainstorm moment. Heller is the perfect person to [have] early Alzheimer’s and Audrey is working with him.”

Heller’s dementia, said Coto, is “playing out quite wonderfully in the season and it leads to one of the best episodes of the year coming up. We think we have treated it in such a way that it is going to be surprising how it plays out.”

Devane found inspiration for his portrayal of President Heller and his struggle with dementia in the Nobel Prize-winning author Colombian writer Gabriel García Márquez, who died in April.

“He had a position about characters,” said Devane. “You have a public character, you have a private character and you have a secret character. I kind of tried to apply that to this.”

Source Los Angeles Times

7 Comments

“We think we have treated it in such a way that it is going to be surprising how it plays out.”

Erm… not if you’re gonna pull the old 25th amendment for the 25th time.

Probably the most surprising thing that could happen is Jack as a president.

A president getting through the day without a single word of him stepping down or being replaced would be a welcome twist.

Well, they better not make Heller suddenly go into full-blown “who are you?” dementia. That’s not how the disease works. The seasons covers 24 hours. He can’t go from “casually forgets things” to “can’t do his job as a President”.

He’s gonna let his evil plans slip.

It’s clear now what they mean by then: a heroic sacrifice.

I love that actor William Devane and was so thrilled to be watching this series, I hope he will be curred from the desease and continue on as mr. president. I look forward to seeing the series come back on!

Leave a Reply

Comment Policy b i u spoiler