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24 reboot in early development, no CTU

During the Fox executive session at the Summer TCA press tour, we learned a few small details about the planned reboot of 24 which is currently in the early stages of development. Here’s what you need to know.

It’s probably going to be very different

Fox Entertainment president David Madden said “The next version of 24 will probably not be CTU, American counterintelligence. We want to take that same sort of ticking clock, incredible urgency and apply it to something else. It will have same style and urgency but in a different venue.”

Besides moving away from CTU, it appears that they might ditch the terrorism aspect entirely.

“The idea I’m excited about currently is not [an end-of-the-world story],” said Fox TV chairman Dana Walden. “Partly what is exciting, we’re opening up the possibility of it being anything. Anything where that 24-hour clock hits at the most critical period in a story. I don’t want to limit them that it should only be an action-oriented show. Maybe not. Maybe it’s emotional action. But we’re keeping the opportunity for them to keep their thoughts open.”

Fun fact: the initial concept for 24 was centered around the 24 hours leading up to a wedding.

Joel Surnow is back

Co-creator Joel Surnow is returning to 24 after a nearly ten year absence. Surnow stepped down as showrunner after the fourth season and eventually left the series entirely during the seventh season in order to pursue other projects. Neither 24: Live Another Day nor 24: Legacy enticed him to return to the writers room, so his involvement here is perhaps the best indication that they’re attempting something creatively different.

Two versions are being developed

According to Deadline, there are actually two different ideas for the upcoming reboot, with Joel Surnow writing one version and Howard Gordon working on another version alongside other (unnamed) writers.

Deadline reports that Fox “may put the two ideas on parallel tracks, developing both, with one of the projects possibly going to pilot before the official pilot season next year.”

It’s still early

The Fox executives emphasized that it’s very early in the creative process. Many of these details can (and probably will) change over the next few months. But it’s clear that Fox wants to extend the life of the 24 franchise further and are open to experimenting with new ideas.

Here are all the various articles written about the news: Deadline, TVLine, Entertainment Weekly, IndieWire, TV Guide, SlashFilm, Screen Rant, and Cinema Blend.


Comments Closed
So excited for more 24!

Surnow’s return is a good sign (as well as Katz and Coto not being involved). Wonder if any characters from the original will appear in this, if it does get ordered to series.

Joel Surnow coming out of semi-retirement to help develop this is a promising sign. Definitely keep Evan Katz and Manny Coto far away from this. They really mailed it in with Legacy. Let’s see what they manage to come up with. I assume this is in early development for 2018-19. Still has a long way to go.

Really hope the 24 anthology series is going to be the end of the franchise.

Please have the Russian finale storyline – with Kiefer of course. And Chloe & Belcheck!

I second that, got to give Jack a final send off!

I agree! What is the point in season 9 if they just have him get taken by the Russians and never be seen again? That’s what was infuriating about 24: Legacy. No Jack Bauer? No 24. Jack Bauer is 24 and 24 is Jack Bauer! I would have been happy with Jack Bauer walking off into the sunset at the end of season 8, but no! TV producers just aren’t happy with a good ending. Unless they follow it up with another season (or even a movie) to tell us what happens to Jack, that is all that is needed to tie up that giant loose end.

Joel Surnow should never have stood down as showrunner in the first place – still not sure why he did – but unless Kiefer is returning one last time, his return now is too little too late and my interest in any further ’24’ is rapidly waning the more news we get about reboot after reboot… *sigh*.

Surnow said in interviews when he left that he was burned out and the show was a grind to make back then.

I believe Joel Surnow said that when he left the series completely in early 2008, but he stepped down as showrunner three years prior after the end of Day 4… and I’ve always wondered why?

Apparently cause he had to step back from day-to-day running of the show, as he was also developing a new project in 2005 with Bob Cochran for FOX. It was called “Thirteen”.

You got a link for that? Interesting…

Thanks a lot, Sharan, never heard that before.

I understand why creative folks like Surnow and Cochran would want to work on new ideas, but why would they do so when ’24’ was consuming so much of their time and effort? They’ve repeatedly stated a typical season of ’24’ was ridiculously tough to make, so why they wanted to diffuse their physical and creative energies is beyond me…

It’s a pity that Surnow started ‘playing around’ with potential other projects, stepping down as showrunner in the process, the show never recovered from that, in my opinion; Day 5 was amazing despite HoGo being showrunner that year not because of it… I’m utterly convinced Surnow was still de-facto showrunner (at least in the creative sense) that season, it’s so markedly different (and better) to the HoGo-run seasons that followed, and much more in line with Days 1-4.

It’s not just Surnow & Cochran. A lot of writers/showrunners develop other projects while they still have active shows. Usually part of the deal they make with the studio they’re contracted with, when they re-up. For example, Jonathan Nolan started developing Westworld for HBO, when he was still doing Person of Interest on CBS (he’s under contract with Warner Bros.).

And besides, since Gordon has been with the show since they got picked up in 2001, I believe Surnow felt he’d be a solid choice to succeed him in leading the show. Plus, Gordon’s been working in TV since the 80s, so he had the experience factor going for him.

I’m aware of talent negotiating development deals under contract, but not all walk away from the show they’re running at the same time; Surnow stepped down as showrunner of ’24’ and I think the show was never quite as good again, my own opinion of course.

The problems with ’24’ seemingly began when HoGo assumed full showrunning duties around Day 6.

If I remember correctly, Surnow only stepped down as showrunner, not as a writer. Going by some of the commentary tracks, he did supervise some aspects of the post-production of the show, even after he left, such as editing as well as composing (though he never wrote the score, he’d approve or disapprove whatever Sean Callery put out).

And the show has been largely ‘group written’ since S5 or S6, if I remember correctly.

You maybe right about dwindling quality from S6. While Gordon was showrunner for that, two other voices that largely drove the room back then, were Evan Katz & Manny Coto (you can see it in the writers room featurette in the DVD of that season). Evan’s solid, but Manny isn’t all that much, IMO. That could’ve also led to the quality sinking, especially that year since Surnow was also working on the pilot “Company Man” with Cochran, Gordon, & Jon Cassar (which had Annie Wersching as the female lead).

I’m hesitant to say the decline of 24 coincided with Howard Gordon as show-runner, especially if Surnow had significant influence on the direction season five took (although that remains unclear). I think numerous there were numerous contributing factors, but two of the biggest were:

I think season six was in the unfortunate position of having to follow up the fifth season with something even bigger, better and fresher. That was always going to be difficult given that the show had already exhausted so much story.

Plus, season five killed off a lot of the supporting cast members that had elevated the show up until that point. The loss of David, Tony and Michelle kick-started the show’s transition into a more anthology-style show with each year dramatically overhauling the cast.

we need more interesting character with more time ( 24 episodes) to develop them, instead of just putting all the new characters being moved by an incident and kill them off way too early for shock value

It won’t be a reboot, it will be spin-off.

Too little, too late. Should have tossed those hacks and got Surnow back the first time. Now they are just beating a dead horse.

Please just let this show be.
Fox, stop beating it’s corpse into the ground.

After reading this and other articles on this, I find it strange that they trying to pitch an idea for a new reboot without involving terrorism. What??? 24 is all about terrorism racing against the clock, or am I wrong?

Overall, I am glad that we starting to hear news of 24 at last !!

There’s a lot they could do: a hostage crisis, a raid, cops hunting a serial killer, or some other crime storyline.

Legacy Survivor
August 10, 2017 at 4:25 am
I would watch a series of 24 that had all of that in one season. Where other shows involving any one of those concepts have failed, I think 24 could make it a success because it is so urgent that it would burn through all of those concepts in real time. Evan and Manny tried in Legacy with Eric’s drug dealer family subplot but it didn’t work, whereas Joel and Howard could make something like that work if it was the main storyline.

IMO I think the 24 brand needs a complete refresh and something totally new! Glad Joel Surnow is back in the mix. They are not limited to ideas they can come up with which is good. The fact that they have two ideas is another good sign. To me 24 is like Law and Order series, Chicago franchise, CSI, Criminal Minds, Bond, Bourne , star trek! The brand can live on in other venues! Again just My opinion as I love 24 no matter what. I still have hope we will see Jack one day again too. I will not fault anyone for their opinions and for being skeptical after the failure of Legacy

People were bored of the repetiveness and same old same old which is why 24 Legacy failed. I still think there is a whole new audience who would watch a 24 that is completely new and maybe an old audience will come back

Uhmm.. no 24 legacy failed becauae of proper character development.. and the story..
Ditchig everything we love about 24 for a new itteration will only be the last nail in the coffin for it.

A wedding? 24 the show about fighting terrorism could be about the 24 hours leading up to a wedding? If this isn’t a joke I will kill myself here and now.

It was a joke

It actually was, really. Per Joel Surnow, when he and Robert Cochran met up at iHOP to discuss the real-time idea, they went through “one bad iteration after another”, before hitting upon the whole ‘race against time’ angle.

The wedding thing was one of them. Cochran mentioned that while talking about it, they figured they weren’t ‘wedding kind of guys’.

Of course, the wedding idea got an outing in the end as Kate Warner’s plot in S2.

First off, I love (no, I’m obsessed) with 24! I’m happy they are bringing Joel Surnow back, I liked the way he and Howard Gordon wrote things. But does anyone else feel like they are stripping the iconic 24 show, piece by piece?! First no Jack Bauer (we need a Russian continuation!), no Chloe and really any original characters from the first and best 24. Now no CTU or counterterrorism?! What the heck, that is no longer 24, the clock is not the star of the show, as we have seen, Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer is! Keep the counter terrorism and Jack Bauer, please! The show didn’t have CTU before and it’s sad but the show will work ok without it. I’m intrigued with the new show, but Jack Bauer has to be it for it to be 24 and for me and many others to watch it. Writers: Please be smart and bring back Jack, that would be the best thing ever!

They cant bring kiefer back. Kiefer refuse to do another 24 now. Unless they gave him something new. Which from where he stand (middle of russia) he cant.

Aside from that kiefer also have new show he need to lead. ‘Desinated Survivor’

Just had a thought: if this is an anthology series, couldn’t cast members from the original series play new characters on this? (like American Horror Story and American Crime).

That’s an intriguing idea, would be fun to see the old cast pop up in different roles.

Not sure how the fanbase would react to that concept, though. Those other shows were pitched as anthology series from the start, so viewers knew what to expect there. But it’s a bit more weird to suddenly switch a show from being heavily serialized to anthological after ten seasons. I think a lot of people would find it harder to accept and/or confusing and distracting.

Recall hearing in the commentary for 7x01, that the idea of a repertoire cast was floating around back in Season 2, with the same actors playing different roles. Never came to pass, unfortunately.

Well, except where Tony Todd is concerned.

True. Or even Anthony Azizi (Mahmud Faheen in S2/Omar in S4).

They probably intended it to do it that way for series regulars or supporting characters in CTU or the government stuff. That didn’t happen quite as much (not counting the extras or background characters, as there were cases of that, with Marci Michelle).

Sorry, Azizi’s character in S4 was “Rafique”, nor Omar. Marwan’s right hand man who gets killed in Episode 16.

They may not call 24 anymore. It could be new name. But the gimmick real time is still there.

Sorry but this is a horrible idea. Take away the terrorism, take away CTU (or FBI, CIA, whatever), take away Jack, and what do you have? A completely different show. 24 wouldn’t be 24 anymore.

They should just wait to bring back Kiefer for one final season. And then give us proper closure.

Good! It’s time to use the real time concept for something new. CTU and terrorism had long worn out its welcome by Season 6.

I agree, no CTU, no intelligence, and a completely different plot away from terror and ticking-bomb scenario won’t be “24”. Maybe turns to be a good show – every new show has the opportunity to be a hit. It’s just not “24”;

I wouldn’t even call it a spin-off. They should be honest and use a completely different name at this time. If they don’t, it would look that they want to capitalize the new show under the very famous brand name of 24.

Legacy Survivor
August 10, 2017 at 4:18 am
I am optimistic about the anthology series of 24 and Kiefer returning to that show. I think it should air for a couple of seasons in 2019 and 2020, then in 2021 produce a TEAM UP season that brings together Chloe, Kate and Belcheck from LAD, plus Tony, John and Louis from Legacy, plus a few other characters from season 1 and 2 of the anthology series to be in season 3 with Jack Bauer back in the lead for the whole season. This would tie everything together nicely, provide closure for Kiefer’s character and celebrate the twentieth anniversary of 24.

FOX still doesn’t get it – one would have thought they learned with the ‘Legacy’ debacle that the ticking time clock format alone is not what viewers fell in love with. The execs seem to think that they can stick any context / story / characters / actors into the mix as long as the 24-hour time span is used and they’ll have a successful show. Maybe the terrorist plotlines became somewhat repetitive for the 9 seasons of ’24’ but to compare the urgency surrounding a terrorism story to a wedding is absurd.

They promis something fresh and new but they won’t keep the word as they did not before… it will all go down the same path without our favourite characters… let’s be honest Fox production is crappy past few years and one cannot expect a lot from it.. it would look completely different if Netflix, showtime, HBO took over even Starz (look what they did with Bruce Campbell and evil dead” … I believe that even Kiefer would change his mind… the true detective 24 style series would be great.. or historic 24 style tv shows from times before watches were invented :D or the last 24 hours of Jon Snow” ..

haha, tell me about it! Every season it was like “this is a darker Jack, he’s in a different place and is DEFINITELY not the Jack we once knew” then by episode 3 he’d usually be back on a provisional basis with the president saying “give Jack whatever he needs”. Same shit, different day – which would’ve been a better title for season 9.

This idea that chucking CTU is some signal that they’re truly shaking up the formula is risible. They said the same thing with Season 7, with the big innovation being that they put a different dress on CTU and called it the FBI. Then they went right back to CTU with Season 8.

They have plenty to prove as far as I’m concerned.

Not sure it’ll sit comfortably with me this new concept. Would really hope they stop doing 24 just for the sake of continuing it. Legacy has badly damaged my love for the series. Not sure if I can take another disaster .

I’d rather see something completely new than underwritten terrorists all over again. It’s been done for over a decade. Kiefer’s gone, the show’s done. Let’s keep the ticking clock concept very much like he suggested. Like I said on another post, do Daylight, Nick of Time, something like that. Hire new writers and a couple of big names and stay away from terrorists and politics. It doesn’t matter if it’s called 24, it would be something entirely new.

Let’s give it a shot. Anything will be better than Legacy!

24 needs to be remade as a grounded comedy or a science-fiction/fantasy series.
Or both.
The font/look/feel would be different for each type.
The only thing they would have in common would be the title and the real-time aspect.

No more terrorists or anything to do with politicians or cops.

Just do the 12-24 episode entirely on breaking Jack out of the Russian jail !!!! People want closure !!!!!!!

I hear this all the time, and it betrays (with all due and sincere respect) a lack of understanding as to what Jack did and why at the end of Live Another Day;

Jack turned himself over to the Russians for the greater good; not only to secure Chloe’s release and the perpetual safety of his family in the U.S. so they could get on with their lives, but also because he finally admitted – to himself as well as to both Audrey and Kate – that what he did in NYC four years prior was a terrible mistake, borne of cold-blooded revenge and not natural justice, that it was time to face up to and atone for his actions, thereby restoring natural justice; he doesn’t need to be broke out of a Russian prison because he likely doesn’t want to, it was right and proper he ended up there… and that explains the wry little smile on Jack’s face to Chloe before he gets into the helicopter; he knows that he can now finally rest, no more running from the inevitable, and no more phone calls or knocks at the door or unexpected incidents that pull him back into ‘the game’.

Like it or not, the ending of Live Another Day is an ending, and an appropriate one at that.

This really does define the end of Jack Bauer in any further iteration of 24. As much as I hate to admit it.

I’m gonna have to enjoy all the previous seasons on repeat now till the end of time.

Whatever this new thing looks like, it needs to be fresh, compelling and interesting. There is so much competition out there it feels like TV Shows are taking over movies in terms of content. So this new 24, whatever it is, needs to be on par or better than the rest.

Hope to see an improvement from Legacy though cause that was shit.

I know this is an old post…but now that DS is over, maybe Jack will be back…..

The fact that Jack “wants” to spend the rest of his life in a Russian prison, and could easily break out any time he feels like it but doesn’t (as his dialogue to the russian agent at the end of 9x12 implies), shows what an inhuman, unbelievable, terminator-style character Jack had morphed into by the end of the series.

The Jack of season 1 was flawed, imperfect, didn’t always do the right thing but was a believable portrait of a family man and government agent. The character by the end of season 9 was a joke.

Jack Bauer at the end of Live Another Day had suffered and endured so much, lost almost everything and everyone dear to him in one form or another, and been surrounded by so much death, destruction, loss, and carnage for so long, of course he’s not the same character anymore… it would have been more unbelievable if he had been.

Of course Jack doesn’t want to spend his life in a Russian prison but I think he understands and is at peace with the fact he may do so… for a number of reasons that I outlined above.

I get that many people don’t like the ending of LAD because it’s not all wrapped up in a little bow with a happy ending (or a clean death), but it was an ending not an open-ended cliffhanger, it was a definite punctuation mark, a potential full stop to Jack’s story… and if it proves to be so, I have no problem with it.

As for the planned continuation of the ‘franchise’ without Jack Bauer, good luck to ’em, but I won’t be watching… I tuned into the series for Jack not the real-time narrative device (as brilliantly conceived and tremendously executed as it was)… and I know I’m not alone in that! The fact the studio and producers still don’t understand that is precisely why we got Legacy… and also, not coincidentally, why it flopped.

Perhaps you misunderstand me. I’m saying that putting one character through such an unbelievable amount of stupid storylines made him an unbelievable character. Maybe his characterisation was “appropriate” for the situations he was in – we’ll never know, because no human has ever been through such a circus of convoluted events.

“if anything happens to her or my family, your entire world will come apart and you will never see it coming” – robs any power of Jack being put in prison when he is boasting about how he can easily get out using his superman-style skills. He’s just staying inside for a laugh. As that line indicates, the writers were leaving themselves a nice little chance to open up the story again.

It was a carbon copy of him being put in a Chinese prison at the end of Season 5. Not any more of a definitive ending than any other season.

Is that the subtle clue then for a future of 24 with Jack or am I clutching at straws?

e.g. If anything happens to Chloe or Kim….

….what else could happen to Chloe given she lost Morris and Prescott? She could be captured by the Russians as a means to hack into a US government computer system or something and subsequently tortured for not complying.

…Kim’s and her family could die in a car bomb or something? But that’s just cruel

I’d say we want Jack back for closure but I’m sad to say that Gerry’s right…we’ve seen the last of him.

Acer4666 – you do know that ’24’ is a fictional television series, right?

As for the planned continuation of the ‘franchise’ without Jack Bauer, good luck to ’em, but I won’t be watching… I tuned into the series for Jack not the real-time narrative device (as brilliantly conceived and tremendously executed as it was)… and I know I’m not alone in that! The fact the studio and producers still don’t understand that is precisely why we got Legacy… and also, not coincidentally, why it flopped.

Amen to that – I feel the same way! If all FOX wants to do is salvage the ticking time clock with a story set inside 24 hours, who cares? Not only is that a gimmick that by itself isn’t a substitute for story, characters or drama but if FOX is hyping a reboot for something “fresh” that doesn’t involve CTU, terrorism or any of the original 9-season characters, they’re hypocrites. The time clock format was around just as long as all of the terrorist plots and even 2 seasons longer than CTU.

Agreed, it’s quite ridiculous how the real time format, which is a gimmick is considered more important than the characters. The format is stale and the revolving door of characters makes it hard to invest in the show.

There are exceptions – most notably, the original “Law & Order” franchise that ran for 16 seasons (I think…..or was it more?). That show succeeded in major cast changes, either on the cops or lawyer side, using the same format, music and screen graphics each season – yet it worked not only because of stellar acting, strong writing and relevant stories but it never focused on a hero or central character for viewers to root for and become connected to. FOX tried to apply the format and terrorist plot in ‘Legacy’ but the acting was atrocious, story weak and there was no one that viewers could root for like they did with Jack.

If FOX uses the time between ‘Legacy’ and any reboot to bring in a strong cast, come up with strong story and set it in the show’s format, it might work without Kiefer – but I don’t feel confident that will happen.

Fox is run by a bunch of fucking morons. A 24 reboot without Jack Bauer and about some idiot waiting for a heart transplant for 12/24 hours or whatever it’s about will fail even worse than Legacy.

Apparently 24 Legacy did so bad that it appears they pulled the blu ray release. Only the dvd is available to pre-order right now…


lol, no one will even buy the DVD release except for that loser Justin!

Give it about 3 months before the DVD starts appearing in supermarkets and electronic store discount bins for $5.99……it’s not going to sell.

One thing working against this potential reboot. 24 basically has been an anthology since season 7. But the show has basically been the same, despite the cast/location changes every season. If they replace CTU with the FBI, CIA (which has already been done) or police detectives, it will still basically be the same format as the previous seasons:

Season 7: FBI DC. Jack, Chloe, Bill, plus a new cast.
Season 8: CTU New York. Jack, Chloe, Renee, and Taylor, plus a new cast.
Season 9: CIA London. Jack, Chloe, Heller, and Audrey, plus a new cast.
Legacy: CTU DC. New cast, except Tony in a recurring role.

Possible Reboot: Likely a completely new cast. CIA, FBI, or police detectives would replace CTU. Crime would replace terrorism. Same real time format. Still the same show.

Crime, of course. No terrorism, but the climax will have to be some terror-action… So, back to the basics… “24 101”. But, know this: Jack will be spoiled… Fuck you Fox!!!

We should go out and burn down the entire Fox… we should drown Cotto and hang Katz… we should go and fuck Dana to her death !!! :D oh come on guys lets give it a shot don’t be that negative!.. it can’t be worse than the Legacy shit or can it? :D

Any body get the 24 Legacy DVD? What’s the Deleted scenes/special features like?

It’s not out yet. I’m willing to bet there won’t be any special features though. At most a small featurette that’s like 5 minutes long

I saw a copy in a store at the weekend. Didn’t bother picking it up. Not worth it

Wait it’s already out??

It’s been out since July in certain countries (UK, Japan). Hasn’t been released in North America yet though, and I have a feeling it won’t be.

Got it…i forgot that we have overseas fans on this board as well!

I think the only thing that made Surnow accepting to “come back” was he would be able to move the plot whatever he wants. In my opinion, it’s clear that he got tired of the original show , first stepping out from the showrunner position and finally leaving the show without waiting the end of the season under development at the time.

Plot twist jack Bauer returns as Batman 😏🙄🤔please no more spin offs.

That’s a very stupid idea because removing the 2 things that made the show popular i.e. CTU and counterterrorism it’s not going to be exciting to watch. Maybe if it was like a cold war type thriller that would be interesting

One version has a chance to be good, the other is Howard Gordon’s.

Oh my god…what the hell are they doing to this show!?

Just show us Jack in Russia!

@Ted a big part of this is kiefer he doesn’t want to return & his got designated survivor. So he’s just as much as to blame balls in his court also.


Designated Survivor is freaking awful.

I lost all intrest in DS, and the last season of 24 Legacy was horrible, no offense to the actors, it was just NOT 24 no matter how hard they tried…All we are asking is for 12 episodes, of Jack being rescued from Russia, by Tony, with help from Chloe and maybe some old faces to really give closure and end the series….You can even do a 2 part 4 hour, TV movie….Whats the big deal ????

These writers need to watch Seasons 1,2, and 3 of 24 to see how 24 became so popular to beginwith.

Form your show around the aspects of those early seasons and you will have a winner. Everything from the style of the offices, to the CHARACTERS, to the MUSIC, to the sound effects, to the filming locations, and the intensity of a personal event–your own family members kidnapped, your own city threatened, etc, this is 24.

Get back to Los Angeles. New York is overdone, as is DC. Designated Survivor is not 24.