Annie Wersching on Jack and Renee’s Romance and the End of 24

’24’ is almost over, but Jack Bauer is about to face one of his toughest challenges yet — trying to start a romantic relationship with Annie Wersching’s Renee Walker.

Jack and Renee take a well-deserved break from kicking bad guy ass to explore their romantic feelings for each other on tonight’s much-anticipated episode.

I recently got a chance to talk with Wersching, who plays Renee on 24, about tonight’s big ep. We also talked about the fan reaction to her character and where Renee might be headed after the show ends. Wersching stayed mum about whether things would actually “work out” between Jack and Renee in the end, but she promised that the show’s final hours would deliver some surprising twists and turns that no one, not even Jack Bauer, could see coming.

How hard is it to say goodbye to ’24’ and to the character of Renee?
Annie Wersching: It’s incredibly hard to say goodbye to this character and the show too, because I’m involved in it and I got to be a part of it, but also because I’m a fan. It’s hard on both levels.

In your career you hope that there will be great things in the future, but it’s hard to leave this role feeling like it could possibly be the role of a lifetime. Obviously you hope as you go through your career that there’s going to be bigger and better things, but I just love her so much, and it’s such an interesting, in-depth character for a TV show.

As a fan it’s definitely a bummer because I think they still have a lot of good years in them, but I understand wanting to go out on a high note and go on to the movie.

Is Renee going to survive this season and head to the movies with Jack?
Annie Wersching: Well, you know, it’s ’24’ so you never know. I was lucky I survived one season (laughs). I’m not holding my breath, you know. But at the same time, I don’t think anybody knows any specifics quite yet about who is going to be in the movie. Obviously Jack will be in it, but other than that we haven’t really been told.

I did meet the movie writer (Billy Ray), but other than that I’m just hoping to survive this season and we’ll see how that goes. Surviving is a tough task on this show.

Jack Bauer and Renee Walker Kiss, Make Out
Jack Bauer and Renee Walker Kiss, Make Out

Judging by the previews for the next episode, it looks like Jack and Renee get some down time to be together alone, finally, and they actually kiss for the first time. What does all of that mean for the future of their romantic relationship on the show?
Annie Wersching: Yeah, it seems like it should have happened before, but it hasn’t. It almost happened in season seven, we had a kiss written in a scene in a hospital, but we didn’t film it, because it felt too cheesy, I guess. It didn’t feel right. But, yeah, I was surprised they leaked that in the previews.

(Tonight’s episode) is definitely an interesting episode in that the threat that Jack and Renee were helping CTU track is basically over. As far as what they were contracted to — he promised to find Hassan and they very sadly and unfortunately didn’t get there in time – he’s done with that. So they’re kind of like “Now what do we do?” (laughs) “How do we hang out with each other without guns involved?”

So they go back to Jack’s apartment and Renee brings up the fact that they made promises to each other throughout this day, but that she understands that you say things in the moment and she say she’s not going to hold him to anything that he’s promised. She’s trying to give him an out.

We shot those scenes over a couple of days, and they were pretty intense. There were definitely moments where we were like, as actors, like, “We’re so much better at running around with guns” (laughs). It was so different for us, but I think it’s going to be a really good episode. It’s going to be something different and something that fans have been wanting to see for a long time. Stuff happens that’s never happened on ’24’ before in terms of the Jack character, and I’m very much involved in that so I’m looking forward to seeing the fan reaction.

What has the fan reaction been like to you and the introduction and development of Renee?
Annie Wersching: I would say that the majority of the fans that I interact with or meet or Twitter or Facebook with are huge supporters of Renee, and they’ve been really great. It’s been interesting because the most intense ones who contact me are actually young women. They’re girls in high school or girls who are just starting college. That took me by surprise a little bit, because it’s a very male-watched show. But I was very pleasantly surprised to see that there are a lot of young woman that really look up to a strong woman on TV and they really enjoy Renee.

And you have your other fans that have somewhat of a Kiefer/Jack obsession. And probably somewhere deep down they think that he may actually marry them someday (laughs)! You know, those are the ones that aren’t quite as keen on Renee, but I think that it would be hard for them to be happy with any woman who was even, like, coming close to their man, which is ridiculous (laughs)!

Renee is a very strong female character. I know it’s hard to develop a character when the show only spans one day per season, but Renee has definitely evolved, especially when she came back this season.
Annie Wersching: Renee is a very strong woman, but I think most strong women on TV are simply that, very strong and that’s usually all you get to see. But she was able to be so strong in one moment and then the next moment she shows how conflicted she feels about things. She can go from kicking a guy’s ass one second to tearing up about it the next second. She’s a very complex woman who is strong, but you can also see that softer side of her. There were so many different levels to her and nuances, so I’m gonna miss her terribly.

So what’s next for you after the show ends? More action-adventure roles or would you like to play something different?
Annie Wersching: You know I had such a great time with Renee, and prior to Renee I wasn’t really playing roles quite like this, so I’m glad that people see me in this way now. But first of all I’m going to have my first baby in August.

Annie Wersching: Thank you, thank you. So that’s going to be the next role for a few months, but I definitely love to work so I’ll get back out there and see what’s next.

I’m guessing your pregnancy is not going to be addressed on the show.
Annie Wersching: No, I mean it’s one day, so you couldn’t really be like, “Um, oh my God, I’m really hungry all of a sudden and I’m going to eat a lot and get a little bit chubbier!” No, none of that really. Timing wise, it actually worked out perfectly that it’s winding down just as I’m starting to show more.

My stunts this year were different from last year. Last year I was doing a lot of fights and rolls and bigger physical things, and this year it was not quite as physical. I did gun work, but not necessarily rolling on the ground or anything like that.

It worked out pretty good as far as hiding it. You know, honestly, the stomach wasn’t quite as hard to hide as some of other things that get large when you’re pregnant (laughs), so that part was interesting. It’s a little harder to hide.

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About Annie Wersching

Annie Wersching is an actress best known for Renee Walker on 24. This is the most comprehensive Annie Wersching resource on the web with the largest collection of pictures, videos, interviews, latest news, and more.