7 JANUARY 2009

The world's most tortured security agent is back with more terror attacks to prevent, and, of course, a raft of new enemies to tackle in series seven.

And if Kiefer Sutherland, the actor who portrays Jack Bauer, was a little lonely on set it's because his character's pals never last too long in 24.

"If they end up standing too close to me for any long period of time there is a good chance they will get shot," he explained. "So if I end up rehearsing a scene with four or five people, no one wants to be the one standing next to me."

Even the new guy on the show Jon Voight – Bauer's latest nemesis - got nervous. "You can go at any second," commented the veteran actor. "You read the next episode hoping you won't get knocked off."

Angelina Jolie's dad can't have been bumped off too early in the plot as he looked pleased to join the 24 gang at Tuesday's season seven launch party, which coincided with a celebration marking the 150th episode.

Photo: Getty Images
Los Angeles' counter terrorist unit must have been empty as some of the key agents including Kiefer's character Jack Bauer and Chloe, played by Mary Lynn Rajsjub, were at a party launching season seven, which airs next Monday
Photo: Rex
Also on hand at the event, which coincided with the 150th episode was new cast member Jon Voight and Cherry Jones, who plays the US president