Kiefer Sutherland
Kiefer Sutherland
as Tom Kirkman

Actor Biography

Kiefer Sutherland stars as Tom Kirkman, a lower-level cabinet member who is suddenly appointed President of the United States after a catastrophic attack on the U.S. Capitol during the State of the Union, on Designated Survivor.

Most recently, Sutherland starred in the critically acclaimed Fox drama 24, for which he has won numerous awards, including a Golden Globe, Emmy and two SAG Awards for Best Actor in a Drama Series.  The show has also won an Emmy Award and a Golden Globe Award for Best Drama. The eighth and final season of 24 aired on FOX in January 2010. 24: Redemption, a made-for-television movie that bridges season six and season seven of the television series, aired on November 23, 2008. The television movie was nominated for five Emmy awards, including one for Sutherland for "Best Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries."

Sutherland recently joined forces with 24 director Jon Cassar on Forsaken, starring opposite Donald Sutherland and Demi Moore, playing John Henry in this Western-inspired drama.

In 2013, Sutherland starred alongside Kate Hudson, Liev Schreiber and Riz Ahmed in The Reluctant Fundamentalist. Directed by Mira Nair, this political thriller is based on the novel by Mohsin Hamid about a Pakistani man working on Wall Street whose world is changed forever by the events on 9/11. The film opened the 69th Venice International Film Festival in 2012 and premiered at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival.

From 2012-2013 Sutherland starred as Martin Bohm in the Fox drama Touch. The series aired for two seasons and blended science and spirituality to explore the hidden connections that bind together all of humanity. At the center of this series was a widower and single father, played by Sutherland, whose quest to reach his emotionally challenged 11-year-old son would shape the destiny of the entire planet.

In 2011, Sutherland starred alongside Kirsten Dunst, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Alexander Skarsgard in the apocalyptic drama film Melancholia, written and directed by Lars von Trier.
This same year, Sutherland starred in the 10-episode web series The Confession on as the unnamed hit man. The series was written and directed by Brad Mirman (The Good Shepherd and Truth) and co-starred John Hurt.

Sutherland also starred on-stage as James Daley in the revival of Jason Miller's Tony and Pulitzer Prize winning play That Championship Season, which ran in spring of 2011.

In 2009, Sutherland starred in Dreamworks Animation's Monsters vs. Aliens. He voiced the character WR Monger, the prison warden of the monsters. Other voices in the cast included Reese Witherspoon, Hugh Laurie, Seth Rogen, Will Arnett and Stephen Colbert. The 3D film opened worldwide on March 27, 2009.

In 2008, Sutherland starred in New Regency's thriller Mirrors as a troubled ex-cop who must save his family from an unspeakable evil that is using mirrors as a gateway into their home. The film co-starred Amy Smart and Paula Patton.

In 2006, Sutherland starred in The Sentinel with Michael Douglas and Kim Basinger. Sutherland portrayed Agent Breckenridge, a secret service agent who finds himself caught in the middle of a plot to assassinate the president. The film was directed by Clark Johnson and was released in April 2006.

In 2004, Sutherland starred in the independent film The River Queen, opposite Samantha Morton. The film was shot in New Zealand and was directed by Vincent Ward.

In 2003, Sutherland starred in the Warner Bros. film Taking Lives, opposite Angelina Jolie and Ethan Hawke. Sutherland also provided the narration in another Warner Bros. film, NASCAR: The IMAX Experience. The year before, Sutherland starred in the Fox film Phonebooth, directed by Joel Schumacher.

Sutherland also starred in the limited release of the World War II drama "To End All Wars."  The screenplay was based on the best-selling book "Through the Valley of the Kwai," which is an account of life as a POW in a Southeast Asian prison camp. The film also starred Robert Carlyle, Ciaran McMenarrin and Mark Strong and successfully screened at both the Toronto and Telluride Film Festivals in 2002.

In 1998, Sutherland was seen starring in Showtime's critically acclaimed original picture A Soldier's Sweetheart, with Skeet Ulrich and Georgina Cates.

In 1997, Sutherland co-starred with William Hurt and Rufus Sewell in the Newline production Dark City. Directed by Alex Proyas, Dark City was a special presentation at the Cannes Film Festival. Sutherland also added his second directorial credit and starred in Truth or Consequences for Triumph Films, alongside Kevin Pollak, Mykelti Williamson, Rod Steiger and Martin Sheen.

In the 1996 Paramount thriller Eye for an Eye, directed by John Schlesinger, Sutherland portrayed an unremorseful, brutal murderer, opposite Sally Field and Ed Harris. Later that summer, he co-starred with Samuel L. Jackson, Sandra Bullock and Matthew McConaughey in the screen adaptation of John Grisham's novel "A Time to Kill." 

In 1993, Sutherland starred in Touchstone Pictures' The Three Musketeers, based on the classic tale by Alexandre Dumas.  The same year, he made his directorial debut in the critically acclaimed Showtime film Last Light, in which he starred opposite Forest Whitaker. 

Sutherland's first major role was in the Canadian drama, The Bay Boy, which earned Sutherland and director Daniel Petrie, Genie award nominations for best actor and best director, respectively. Following his success in The Bay Boy, Sutherland eventually moved to Los Angeles and landed television appearances in The Mission, an episode of Amazing Stories and in the telefilm Trapped in Silence, with Marsha Mason.

In 1992, Sutherland starred opposite Ray Liotta and Forest Whitaker in Orion Pictures' Article 99, and in Castlerock's military drama A Few Good Men, also starring Jack Nicholson and Tom Cruise.  Later, in 1994, he starred with Jeff Bridges and Nancy Travis in the American version of The Vanishing for 20th Century Fox.

Sutherland's other film credits include Flatliners, Chicago Joe and the Showgirl, 1969, Flashback, Young Guns, Young Guns 2, Bright Lights, Big City, The Lost Boys, Promised Land, At Close Range, and Stand By Me.

Sutherland resides in Los Angeles.