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Fox Cancels 24

24 Executive Producer Answers Questions about Cancellation.

By Jarrod Sarafin     March 26, 2010
Source: The Hollywood Reporter

Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) in Fox's day 8 of 24(2010).
© Fox/Bob Trate

After a few weeks on the cancellation bubble, Fox has officially dropped the axe on its long running action series "24". The Hollywood Reporter confirms the drama will air its final real-time episode in May, the victim of a confluence of circumstances: a swelling budget, declining ratings and creative fatigue.

Fox TV is developing a theatrical film that takes Bauer to Europe, and showrunner and executive producer Howard Gordon says other possibilities are being explored as well.

"There are other possible iterations of Jack Bauer and his world," Gordon said.

The writing has been on the wall for the show all season, which Gordon said felt like "senior year of high school" to star Kiefer Sutherland.

Because of the constant upward spiral of cast and creative team salaries, any drama begins to carry serious financial weight after its fifth year. Fox paid a hefty $5 million per episode license fee to 20th TV.

Meanwhile, the show's ratings dropped 16% this season to a 3.8 adults 18-49 rating including DVR -- still healthy numbers for a scripted drama, yet not enough to overcome the program's increasing cost, a budget that was set to climb once again since contracts for Sutherland, Gordon and other key players expire this season.

Then there's the show's creative struggle. How many times have "24" characters declared that a looming crisis will be addressed "within the hour," or has Bauer struggled to gain the respect of the latest CTU chief? Gordon says the show's writers felt they had exhausted the real-time possibilities for Bauer and never came up with a truly compelling idea for Day 9.

"If one of the writers came up with a good idea, I'd happily pitch it to Kiefer and then happily pitch to a network, whether Fox or someone else," Gordon said. "We just don't have that idea, and that's where everything has to start."

Producers did sniff around at other networks, namely NBC, with 20th TV offering to lower its license fee to $3.5 million to keep the show going. NBC ran the numbers and passed.

You can check out a Q&A with executive producer Howard Gordon on the cancellation of the series and the future of Jack Bauer here.


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Bedlam 3/26/2010 5:46:07 PM

Finally!!! I hated this show from the start and I'm happy to see it go. No offense the fans it has the website but I found the whole thing distastful.

Wiseguy 3/26/2010 6:01:39 PM

I lost interest in this after season 2 I think. Won't say I'm glad is cancelled cause frankly I just didn't care for the show anymore. Well I will be glad if it's replaced with something I do like

dbrock06 3/26/2010 6:28:27 PM

About 6 seasons too late.  Great concept a bit long in the tooth.  there is just so much yelling from Jack Bauer I can take.  Where's the Device!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!???

Also,  Could they get a few actors that took an acting class or two before shooting a scene for 24 as well?


Chopsaki 3/26/2010 6:48:34 PM

I guess they finally found a way to kill Jack Bauer. Great show and 8 seasons is a pretty solid run. I'll be looking forward to the 2 hour movie & it's 11 sequels...JK!

samson 3/26/2010 7:10:48 PM

I'll miss the show. But, I have to admit its time to let 24 go.

Seriously, CTU has to be the most unsecure, mole ridden government defense agency in history. Time to shutter it's doors for good.

It's been a great ride. It will be missed.


6dra6on6 3/26/2010 7:19:33 PM

24 was top notch tv in it's early seasons. The trouble with it now is the head writer; Branan Braga. The guy can't write. He's the one responsible for running Star Trek into the ground by rehashing old storylines over and over and then creating another Trek series only to do the same thing. Now he's doing it with 24. I can't even finish this season because the writing is a complete joke and unwatchable. It's so bad it actually gets my blood boiling just to watch it because he thinks we're so stupid to buy into his unoriginal shite. It's so goddam predictable too. Well, I can go on and on, but unlike Braga, I'll end it when I should. Braga is the problem and hence the reason why, "they had exhausted the real-time possibilities."

ponyboy76 3/26/2010 7:23:27 PM

I love how a long running show gets cancelled then all the haters go off taling about how much the show sucked and that its about time. It had 7 good seasons. How many shows that you watch can say that they even had 2 or 3 seasons. Scripted dramas don't lst this long. It had a great run. Jack Bauer kicks ass. This season and the writers lack of originality, with the above mentioned , moles every season, just killed it.

fft5305 3/26/2010 7:34:02 PM

Actually, Chopsaki, several times in the article, it mentions that the show is done in it's real-time format. They have mentioned feature films several times in the past year. So I wouldn't doubt it if that's the direction they head.  I hope so. I'm not tired of 24 yet!

Calibur454 3/26/2010 8:28:20 PM

24 is a great show but I also think it may be time to say goodbye  to the tv series. I'm sure there will be a movie and a string of books that follow. Jack was a great charachter and i do think some seasons were not as good as others due to writing. I agree with ponyboy in saying that scdripted dramas like this rarely last this long.  not only that but the ratings still remained high and the fan base was always there to support it. Not many shows can say that.


fenngibbon 3/26/2010 9:32:05 PM

In response to the plot twist that Dana was a mole, in the comments to the review of the last episode, I said "Die, show!  Die, die, die, die, die!"  And now I see that the show has been cancelled.




Lust after me, Alison Haislip!  Lust, lust, lust, lust, lust





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