Kiefer Sutherland’s mother saved him from the pitfalls of fame.

Kiefer Sutherland was saved from the pitfalls of fame by his mother Shirley

Kiefer Sutherland was saved from the pitfalls of fame by his mother Shirley

The 55-year-old actor - who started his film career as a teenager in the mid-1980s - has claimed that his actress mother Shirley Douglas was the reason behind his successful transition to adult stardom because she was not afraid to "kick [his] a**."

He said: "It's a combination of things, but I got really lucky. My mom is a huge influence in my life. She's probably the only person I was actually honestly scared of. She's a tough girl of five [foot] two and she would kick my a**! And a couple times she did but I respected her so much. "

Kiefer -whose father is screen legend Donald Sutherland - admitted he has "screwed up" a lot over the years, but he ultimately ended up on the straight and narrow because he didn't want to disappoint his mother.

Speaking on CBC's 'The Q Interview', he added: "I've screwed up plenty of times. But I think had it not been my fear of disappointing her. It could have been a lot worse."

The '24' actor praised his stint at boarding school, where he was sent after getting into "a little bit of trouble" for giving him "basic skills" that instilled professionalism into him.

He explained: "I went to a place called St. Andrew's college for grades eight and nine because I got a little bit of trouble. And that's where I got sent. I was not a good student, but they were an incredible school.

"And the stewardship that they gave me even in the two years that I was there before they decided we weren't maybe a great fit was pretty impressive.

"And I often credit them with giving me at least basic skills that allowed me to get to my audition on time to prepare for that audition to learning the lines to being able to feed myself being able to know what when something was serious, and whether that was in Toronto, or whether that kind of transferred down to New York and ultimately, Los Angeles."

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