Clock winds down on “24”: Kiefer and company close to calling it a day

Tick, tick, tick, BONG!!!!

“24’s” time is almost up. 

20th Century Fox TV and Fox appear ready to end the long-running hit after this season, the show’s eighth.

Studio and network execs declined comment — but it’s believed that the final decision will be made in the next day or two. Move is not a huge surprise, but still reps the end of an era for Fox.

“24” helped usher in Fox’s ratings surge in the 2000s, as the franchise — along with “American Idol” and “House,” among other series — led the network’s adults 18-49 ratings crown. 

But the cost of producing “24” has continued to increase, while ratings have dipped. A one-time critical darling, “24” has also received its share of knocks from reviewers this season.

The studio is said to be considering shopping “24” to other nets — but given the thriller’s age and price tag, it’s believed that the interest from other outlets will be limited.

But even as bell tolls for “24,” the franchise is far from over. Sutherland and the “24” team have been keen on turning the show into a movie property, and have made major strides in recent months toward making that long-term goal a reality.

Twentieth Century Fox’s film side recently hired scribe Billy Ray (“State of Play,” “Flightplan”) to pen the script for the feature version. (Daily Variety,  Feb. 8.)

Ray’s pitch, which takes Jack Bauer to Europe, was a hit with Fox execs and producers of the high-concept television series.

Script is said to have come through “24” star Sutherland, who’s also an exec producer on the series — and is said to be eager to turn the long-running TV skein into a movie franchise. 

Such a move into the features world was considered impossible while production continued on the TV series — given that “24” takes much of the year to produce, given its feature-like shooting schedule. But with “24” expected to end its run, the ability to focus on a movie could now finally be in sight.

“24” was created by Robert Cochran and Joel Surnow, while exec producer Howard Gordon runs the show through his Real Time Prods. banner.

Brian Grazer’s Imagine Entertainment produces the show along with 20th Century Fox TV.

Sutherland has starred throughout all eight seasons as Jack Bauer, a federal agent and member of the Los Angeles Counter Terrorist Unit (and who has saved the world several times over). “24” made noise for its real time format, in which all 24 episodes take place as consecutive hours in the same day.

Although it was developed before the terrorist attacks of 9/11, “24” debuted several months afterward — and in many ways began to mirror the changed world, given the real-life fears over terrorism and debates over torture methods. The show’s depiction of an African-American president was also seen as a ground-breaking precursor to the 2008 election of Barack Obama.

Show has also won both the Emmy and the Golden Globe awards for outstanding drama, while Sutherland has scored both an Emmy and a Globe for drama actor. “24” has also received Emmy Awards for writing and directing; last year, Cherry Jones won an Emmy for supporting actress in a drama.

This season’s edition of “24,” which takes place in New York, stars Sutherland, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Cherry Jones, Anil Kapoor, Annie Wersching, Katee Sackhoff, Mykelti Williamson, Freddie Prinze Jr., Chris Diamantopoulos and John Boyd.

Howard Gordon, Evan Katz, David Fury, Manny Coto, Brannon Braga, Brad Turner, Alex Gansa, Kiefer Sutherland and Brian Grazer are executive producers.

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  1. It’s important to take responsibilities, because no one else is going to do it for you.

  2. Olle says:

    Any final season that does not end with Jack actually dying, would be a disappointment! – I’d rather have a worthy season and series finale, than several movies to “look forward to” that don’t have much chance of doing the series justice…

  3. Nathan says:

    I am a loyal fan of 24. I very much want the show to continue – as someone else has posted – even having Season 9 as a lead-in to the films.
    Bring back some former characters, like Mandy – she could’ve escaped custody from Season 4, or even Jamey Farrell from Season 1 – we didn’t see her die on screen. We need another bad guy like Victor Drazen – a big guest star like Dennis Hopper was. Someone like James Spader. Could you imagine the fireworks with James Spader and Kiefer Sutherland?
    Whatever the means, we need 24 for season 9. We can’t let one of the best shows of all time get the axe…

  4. PJ says:

    I am very upset over this as 24 is and always will be the best show and every season just gets better and better I am a very big fan and it seems to me that Fox is just to anxious to make a movie Come on Kieffer PLEASE keep making 24 you are Jack I have watched the seasons over and over and if there was a 24 quiz i would be a millionaire Atleast keep if going for 10 seasons then make the movie

  5. MM says:

    OMG this show was blowing chunks 4 years ago-I swear if i heard “secure the perimeter” one more time my head was going to explode

  6. Crikers says:

    Finally. The show has gone completely downhill since season 3 so it’s good to finally see them put it to rest and end its misery.
    And overseas Jack-Attack sounds good for a movie, but I’m curious as to how they plan to ditch the real time 24hr format and still make it believable. Hopefully no tacky constant “xx hours later!” overlays every few seconds.

  7. Tore says:

    I’ve loved 24 from day 1, but even I agree it’s getting bad. Season 1 was great. As was season 2. And season 3. And season 4. Season 5 was iffy. Season 6 was one of the worst things I’ve ever seen. Season 7 would have been alright except the female president’s story and acting was horrible. Thus far, season 8 has been better than 6 and 7, but it’s coasting along season 5 territory. Just not good enough to deserve another season.

  8. KJL says:

    This is a horribly written article.

  9. schotz says:

    24 was one my favorite shows until they hired janeane garofolo. I stopped watching and buying when she came to the show. The hollywood and music crowd that feel they have a right to preach and degrade average Americans are done in my book, I reject them and their ideology. My television is quickly becoming obsolete and not worth watching because of these goons. So 24—see ya!

  10. RedneckJD says:

    “24” was in trouble last season when they started running those silly pro-environmental bits at the end of the show. Since we now know the environmental brouhaha was a hoax, this destroyed the interest of thinking people. If there is a 9th season, it should involve a plot along the lines of Michael Crichton’s “State of Fear”.

  11. desoto says:

    Even though Jack has become a whiny puss, he is still the only thing evenly remotely close to a real man on TV anymore. What are we supposed to watch? Charlie Sheen being a snarky worm?
    dammit – Season 9 is a requirement

  12. John P. Cooper says:

    I hate to see it go and I hope it does not.
    OTOH – Seasons 7 and 8 have been extremely disappointing and I almost turned it off the other night. That would have been unthinkable during the first six seasons.
    Heartbroken, but they ruined it themselves.

  13. Koblog says:

    I’m tired of the behind-the-scenes real bad guys being Americans and the guys who are actually blowing up the world are cast as reasonable, even saintly, heroes.
    No wonder the ratings dipped. I was recording it on the DVR, but watched only the first episode this season, then canceled it from my recording list.
    Great power, that — me canceling a show.

  14. boorad says:

    Ahh, Jack, we hardly knew ye!
    Tell Marwan we said ‘Hi!’ (by far, the best season!!!)

  15. viezerk says:

    I think that sucks…. ROYALLY. The best show on TV. Come on open your eyes people. What are you going to put on to replace it. NOTHING because you can’t.

  16. Thank God, I can’t believe the show lasted this long.

  17. Joe Doakes says:

    I was heartbroken when they cancelled The Unit . . . you will survive and find something else to do.

  18. Matt says:

    The simple fact is EVERY season is EXACTLY the same; Jack is saving the world 1 hour later he is an enemy of the state 1 hour later he is saving the world 1 hour later someone gets tortured 1 hour later Jack gets shot or poisoned 1 hour later he is cured 1 hour later he is once again an enemy of the state 1 hour later minority (race or gender) president does something heroic or somewhat important 1 hour later Jack is a savior again… this continues until the last hour where Jack overcomes an extreme situation just to become, once again, the hero.

  19. weggg says:

    it’s because Anil Kapoor is terrible. And he can’t say millionaire properly.

  20. kathy says:

    If FOX cancels 24 I will never watch Fox again. I have loved this show for all 8 seasons. I really missed it when there was the writers strike. Please don’t cancel 24. I love it and Kiefer.

  21. OklahomaBound says:

    It would be nice if they gave it one more season beyond this one where they could gear it towards a dramatic ending rather than deciding in the middle of this season that they need to find a suitable ending in their last few episodes.
    They could really give it a good send off by dumping the terrorist hugging left-wingers political correctness and make sure the show highlights our real enemy, Muslims, rather than Russians or whatever other group they decide won’t be offended. Then Jack needs to get back to doing what he did in earlier seasons, beating the crap out of these scum rather than deciding the harsh interrogations that worked in early seasons suddenly doesn’t work or produces false leads once again mimicking our terrorist enabling leftist. If showing the worlds Muslim terrorist as our enemies just won’t pass the PC test then bring Comrade Obama or any left-wing eco-terrorist group into the plot, I wouldn’t mind seeing them brought to justice Jack Bauer style.

  22. Ken says:

    PLEASE PLEASE!! One more season where Jack: gets stabbed, shot, electrocuted, drowned, run over by car, bitten by poisonous spiders, eaten by pygmies, attacked by nymphomaniacs, fathers triplets with Chloe, is elected President, dissolves Congress, time travels back to save Lincoln, kills people (gun, knife, club, axe, strangulation, and kindness) marries the hot FBI Physco chick, reclaims control of CTU,and finally dies eating a chicken salad sandwich, all in one 24 hour period.

  23. Joe says:

    Last year’s politically correct storyline was the death blow for me. I watched the first couple of episodes this year to see if it was going to change, and it did not. Jack turned into the “watchdog” of everyone else, making sure characters like Renee stayed in line and he got upset when she did torture like he used to do. (Plus he’s carrying a “man purse” for crying out loud!)
    And if they are excited that they got the writer of “state of play” to write a feature film for them, then I just as “un-excited” as they are excited. More politically correct things in the future for Jack, which is probably the way Sutherland wants it.

  24. Telepromter says:

    “Here’s hoping that Fox can work out a strategy to keep 24 going for one more season. It would be nice to have the writers craft a season specifically to launch the feature franchise, rather than having the current season do so.”
    I think a 22 hour season with a 2 hour real time feature film finale would make the most sense.

  25. AtheistConservative says:

    “Aw Jeez, now where will the War Party get its inspiration?”
    Hey, Bub, Obama just surged in Afghanistan and tried to take credit for Iraq (after the Democrats pumped that war for over a decade, and voted for it in plurality in 2003).
    So which is the ‘War Party’?
    Is it the same party that takes the most money from the insurance industry – namely, the Democrats?

  26. JD Mix says:

    This has been an incredibly insightful and precient show. Kiefer Sutherland is simply outstanding. Choices for all supporting cast over the years has also been spot-on. My personal favs include Presidents Palmer, Logan, and Taylor, the character of Aaron, and ESPECIALLY Renee Walker – Annie Wersching is NOT just a beautiful face. She plays her complex character to a ‘T’ – amazing. And Freddie Prinz Jr. is turning out an admirable, if not impressive, performance. Kudos!
    But if it has to end to begin the big-screen adventures SO BE IT! Mr. Sutherland is no spring chicken (sorry, Jack) but he easily holds his own against Pierce Brosnan, Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford (as Indy), and Bruce Willis, to name a few ‘weathered’ action heros.
    Finally, a shout out to the producers and writers, alike.
    And to Fox and Imagine Entertainment for recognizing the pro-American void in TV entertainment today. Thank you.

  27. Neo says:

    The writers’ strike made the schedule for “24” erratic and viewers got used to watching “2 & 1/2 Men” and “Big Bang” in the same time slot.

  28. Bob says:

    Aw Jeez, now where will the War Party get its inspiration?

  29. AtheistConservative says:

    How can anybody seriously claim that this show is worth keeping?
    Our nation’s idiocy (which culminated in the joke that was Obama’s election) couldn’t help but infect this show. Jack Bauer has become a whiny loser. They tried to be all hip and edgy by making the woman into the new Jack Bauer, but all that does is reinforce how much of a loser Jack has become. The woman president whines about treaties and peace processes. The terrorists are never believable – how many times has it been Russians or British people? How many times has it turned out that the US is behind the whole thing? There was even a season where a Muslim – a poor, helpless pawn of course – had a change of heart and refused to continue the attack!
    Every season relies upon believing that CTU can’t do effective background checks and can’t monitor its employees. Comm units cut in and out by plot necessity.
    But most of all, the show is boring. It is so trite and PC and predictable that it’s no fun to watch. So yes, kill it.
    Now if only they could kill Law and Order.

  30. Koop says:

    I’ll be sad to see it end, but this season has been pretty boring, mainly due to the Dana/Jenny & Kevin storyline and not enough Jack.

  31. Paul says:

    If 24 were to make a season 9, they need to explore the idea of interviewing young writers in the world. Some of us know how to write an amazing sotryline. The 24 writers are tired. Give the young adults a chance!

  32. Darrin says:

    What a surprise, Fox cancels a GOOD show.

  33. Steveo says:

    Never seen the show. Get a life people.

  34. 3 things can save 24… moving the time slot to 8pm, leaving NY, and of course better writing. I am not sure what happened between season 7 and 8, but the story lines have been lack luster to say the least.

  35. 3 things can save 24… moving the time slot to 8pm, leaving NY, and of course better writing. I am not sure what happened between season 7 and 8, but the story lines have been lack luster to say the least.

  36. John says:

    Dana and Cole are to 24 what Nikki and Paolo were to LOST, and they should be dealt with in a similar and (hopefully) timely manner.
    This has been an incredibly bad season.

  37. Jen says:

    Blame Cole and Dana, they are the reason why 24 is being cancelled. They suck and they should be pulled, not 24. Fire them already, they are worthless and holding the show behind.

  38. Jen says:

    Just when Jack was getting a love interest, Fox has to pull the plug. This irritates me. Jack and Renee Walker are so good together. Fox won’t even give them a chance, they’re idiots.

  39. R says:

    Uggh, why is this show still on the air in the first place …

  40. KUO says:


  41. Jooe says:

    this season is just getting better.

  42. Bill says:

    FOX IS FULL OF IDIOTS. they are the worst network. YES EVEN WORSE THAN NBC

  43. namma says:

    season 8 is so so good!!!! i just started watching and it ends?!?!? at least i have 1-7 to watch!

  44. Lisa says:

    This is just speculation! There is lots of life left in 24 for a 9th season. Don’t cancel 24 Fox it would be a mistake. Renew 24 give it the series finale season it deserves. Fans support bringing back 24 for a 9th season.

  45. Johnny says:

    Finally. This show has been coasting on good will from the first season for a long time now. There’s been more weak seasons than strong ones.

  46. Chris says:

    I do hope Fox are not making the mistake of listening to those who populate internet forums with the sole intention of criticizing everything. They should take a look at the actual volume of such people, it is trivial compared to the show’s audience.

  47. Ryan says:

    What new does this tell us? This article is simply founded on speculation that the show will end, not actual facts.

  48. Meg says:


  49. Amy says:

    Here’s hoping that Fox can work out a strategy to keep 24 going for one more season. It would be nice to have the writers craft a season specifically to launch the feature franchise, rather than having the current season do so.

  50. Krs says:

    I hope the movies are put together as well as the tv show. Oh and please don’t cancel the tv show.

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