Earlier this month we learned the bittersweet news that the Fox network was seriously considering ending the long running hit TV drama 24 (which, in all honesty, revolutionized the hour-long action drama on television) but at that time, no decision about ending the show was made. Since then, we heard a rumor that NBC was interested in picking up the show if Fox decided to end it but no other concrete information about that report has come to light (and, in fact, you’ll read that Kiefer Sutherland admits the NBC plan was never really a viable option). But, just as expected, Fox announced concretely late yesterday that the current season of 24 will be the show’s last. The show is officially dunzo. Here is some press release information issued by Fox late yesterday:
In a joint decision made by 24’s star and executive producer Kiefer Sutherland, executive producer and showrunner Howard Gordon, Twentieth Century Fox Television, Imagine Entertainment and Fox Broadcasting Company, it was determined that the acclaimed series will end its remarkable eight-season run. Jack Bauer’s last day on FOX will conclude when the final two hours of “Day Eight” air Monday, May 24 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT). As the countdown to the series’ climactic conclusion races on, the final 11 hours will air uninterrupted Mondays (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. Multiple award-winning series star Kiefer Sutherland reflected on the show’s run: “This has been the role of a lifetime, and I will never be able to fully express my appreciation to everyone who made it possible. 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. This feels like the culmination of all our efforts from the writers to the actors to our fantastic crew and everyone at Fox. Looking ahead to the future, Howard Gordon and I are excited about the opportunity to create the feature film version of 24. But when all is said and done, it is the loyal worldwide fan base that made it possible for me to have the experience of playing the role of Jack Bauer, and for that I am eternally grateful.” Executive producer and showrunner Howard Gordon said, “Kiefer and I have loved every minute of making 24, but we all believe that now is the right time to call it a day. I echo his sentiments of gratitude toward the show’s amazing creative team, as well as the studio and network who have always believed in us and shown us unbelievable support.” “24 is so much more than just a TV show – it has redefined the drama genre and created one of the most admired action icons in television history,” said Peter Rice, Chairman, Entertainment, Fox Networks Group. Kevin Reilly, President, Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company added, “We are extremely proud of this groundbreaking series and will be forever thankful to Kiefer, the producers, the cast and crew for everything they’ve put into 24 over the years. It’s truly been an amazing and unforgettable eight days.” “We are so grateful to Kiefer and Howard who have really poured their hearts and souls into making this show over the past eight seasons,” commented Gary Newman and Dana Walden, Chairmen, Twentieth Century Fox Television. “To everyone who contributed to this iconic series over its amazing run, we want to extend our heartfelt appreciation for your incredible work.” Added Imagine Entertainment’s Brian Grazer, “I’m so proud to have been a part of 24, which has become such a cultural phenomenon. And to Kiefer and Howard and everyone who has worked on the show, many thanks.” Now in its eighth season with Kiefer Sutherland starring as the heroic Jack Bauer, the inventive and suspenseful 24 has been nominated for a total of 68 Emmy Awards, winning for Outstanding Drama Series in 2006. Over the course of seven seasons, Sutherland garnered seven Emmy nominations and one win for Outstanding Lead Actor – Drama Series. While the series gained global recognition, Sutherland’s portrayal of the legendary character penetrated the American psyche like no other dramatic television character to become part of the English lexicon. Premiering November 6, 2001, 24 employed a pioneering split-screen, fast-paced format with complex interweaving storylines as viewers followed anti-terrorism agent Jack Bauer through 24 pulse-pounding episodes, each covering one hour and presented in real time. Subsequent seasons combined the show’s unique and trend-setting format while delivering compelling new elements and attracting talented actors and guest stars, including the Emmy Award-winning Cherry Jones (President Allison Taylor). The series also currently stars Mary Lynn Rajskub (Chloe O’Brian), Anil Kapoor (Omar Hassan), Annie Wersching (Renee Walker), Katee Sackhoff (Dana Walsh), Mykelti Williamson (Brian Hastings), Freddie Prinze Jr. (Cole Ortiz), Chris Diamantopoulos (Rob Weiss) and John Boyd (Arlo Glass). The first six seasons were set in Los Angeles, and following the strike-induced delay of Season Seven, “24: Redemption,” a two-hour film bridging Seasons Six and Seven, was set in Africa. Washington, D.C. was the setting for Season Seven, and the final season of 24 finds Jack Bauer thwarting a terrorist attack in New York. At the conclusion of Season Eight, 24 will have a produced a total of 194 episodes (including “24: Redemption”), making it one of the longest-running action television shows in history.
As I mentioned before … the time for the show to end has come. The last couple of seasons have not been great and I would much rather see a show I love end gracefully rather than in a long, drawn-out way that might completely ruin all the great memories of a great show. Even as we mourn the death of a show like 24, we can take comfort in the fact that plans are deffo in the works to move the franchise to the big screen. This may be the end of 24 on the small screen but there is great hope for a string of big-budget films in the near future. After the jump, read a short interview that 24 star Kiefer Sutherland gave to TV Guide regarding the end of the show … More »