’24′ Is Officially Done; Sutherland Calls Decision ‘Bittersweet’

by | March 26, 2010 at 8:06 PM | TV News

Kiefer Sutherland on 24. (Photo: Fox)

Kiefer Sutherland on 24. (Photo: Fox)

Fox’s ‘24‘ has a total of 11 hours remaining on the clock.

As Fancast recently reported, Jack Bauer has reached the end of the line and the oft-acclaimed action-drama series will call it a day on May 24, Fox announced on Friday.

“While the end of the series is bittersweet, we always wanted ’24′ to finish on a high note, so the decision to make the eighth season our last was one we all agreed upon,” says series star and executive producer Kiefer Sutherland.

Although the ’24′ creative team did explore what a ninth season would look like, exec producer Howard Gordon told TheWrap.com that “frankly we came to the conclusion that the story had run its course in the 24-hour, real-time framework.”

Instead, ’24′ will wind down Jack Bauer’s eighth very bad day with what Gordon calls a “pretty dark and complex” series of events that tee up, ideally, a big-screen extension of the series.

A ’24′ film is already in development, with Billy May (‘State of Play’) at work on a script that sends Jack to Europe for a daylong adventure condensed into two or so hours. Says Sutherland, “Howard Gordon and I are excited about the opportunity to create the feature film version of ’24.’”

As for how this season will actually end, Gordon told the Hollywood Reporter, “Some will throw their shoes at the screen, inevitably some will be angry…. You can’t please everybody you can only do the best you can do. I’m hoping people lean forward. I’m hoping the first feeling people have is, ‘Damn I miss it, I want more.’”

So why won’t the fans getting more ’24′ on their TV? Despite the series’ undeniable legacy – Fox entertainment boss Kevin Reilly says it “redefined the drama genre,” while producer Brian Grazer of Imagine Entertainment calls ’24′ a “cultural phenomenon” – it was a confluence of waning ratings, significant production costs, and the aforementioned threat of creative stagnation that promoted the decision to call it a day.

“This has been the role of a lifetime,” Sutherland says, “and I will never be able to fully express my appreciation to everyone who made it possible.”

’24′ joins ABC’s ‘Lost‘ as two long-running serials coming to an end this spring despite a successful and serious fan base. Both shows perform well in the ratings, and on Fancast.com.

Stay tuned for more ’24′ news.

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Meanwhile, with the series’ future decided, On Demand from Comcast is offering a special and timely celebration of 24.

Customers can revisit – or visit for the first time – ’24′s most memorable and most explosive moments.

Every past season of ’24′ is now available On Demand up until April 7 for only 99 cents per episode. Episodes of season 7 are also available in HD for $1.49/episode.

And the most recent hours from Jack’s current day from hell are available here, online, for free.

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