Northern Irish actress Michelle Fairley endured a rather unceremonious exit from HBO's Game of Thrones after the show's shocking season 3 finale, and as we approach the next installment in the franchise, her absence will surely be keenly felt. But you can't keep a good Stark down for very long, and Fairley is now moving onto the next big thing in her career: a role on the miniseries 24: Live Another Day, Fox's new upcoming entry in the life and times of embattled CTU agent Jack Bauer.
That's a significant change of scenery, to say the least; Fairley will leave behind her digs in the kingdoms of Westeros in favor of modern-day London, where Bauer once again finds himself shouldering the burden of foiling a catastrophic global terror plot. This time around, however, he's in the unenviable position of being a wanted man following the events of the 24 series finale, which will undoubtedly alter the established dynamic audiences have become accustomed to in the program's respectable eight-season run.
But where does Fairley fit into Bauer's latest bid to save the world? Deadline, who dropped this little nugget of information earlier today, doesn't say outright, but from the sounds of things she's going to be one of 24: Live Another Day's heavies; she'll be playing Margot, a British national who just so happens to be the widow of an infamous terrorist. That still leaves viewers with a very broad picture of what the series will look like, but at least we can safely put her at the center of the threat Jack's out to neutralize.
Fairley is coming into 24: Live Another Day late in the game; she'll be replacing Judy Davis, one of the originally projected cast members, who had to sign off of the project for personal reasons. While it's unfortunate that the production had to bid Ms. Davis farewell, gaining the talents of Ms. Fairley in exchange seems like a more than acceptable trade-off. If nothing else, retainers of House Stark will be happy to see her back in action on the small screen.
Since disembarking from the violent, unpredictable, unforgiving world of Game of Thrones, Fairley has kept herself busy by making guest appearances in USA's Suits as well as Ralphe Fiennes' biopic The Invisible Woman, and (perhaps most notably) Philomena, Stephen Frears' Oscar-nominated film based on the novel of the same name. 24: Live Another Day should see her operating in a very different mode from each of these, though there's not much detail available about Margot beyond the basics; will she be a sympathetic villain, or perhaps someone who's more of a typical megalomaniac?
Wherever Margot falls on the spectrum of antagonism, watching Fairley in the role should be great fun. Thus far, 24: Live Another Day looks like one of the best-cast and potentially most explosive offerings in the series to date. We'll see where it goes come May.
24: Live Another Day premieres on May 5th, 2014.