As was rumored last year, Fox is bringing 24 back, but with an all-new cast–meaning Kiefer Sutherland’s Jack Bauer won’t be included.
24: Legacy, as it’ll be called, will follow the same basic format of the original series. That includes the real-time format where each episode covers a single hour of one day, split-screen camera shots, and presumably at least one traitor at the fictional Counter Terrorist Unit.
Legacy will tell the story of a military hero who comes back to the United States and has some kind of unspecified trouble following him. He turns to CTU “for help in saving his life, and stopping what potentially could be one of the largest-scale terror attacks on American soil,” according to the press release.
At this point, Fox has only ordered the pilot episode, so it’s possible the full series may not be picked up. Series veterans Howard Gordon, Manny Coto, and Evan Katz are all signed on as executive producers.
Fox CEO Gary Newman said last year that they would ideally get Sutherland back, but indicated that he was not interested in continuing the series.
“It isn’t something he wants to do at this point, but he encouraged us to continue and look for a way to bring the show back,” Newman said in August.
At the time, Newman didn’t rule out the possibility of bringing back existing characters, but noted, “It would not surprise me if it’s a total reset in terms of the characters.”
According to Entertainment Weekly, Fox is looking to hire an African-American actor for the lead role. No one has been cast yet, but the search is happening now, with the pilot set to film this winter.
Following a four-year break after its eighth season, 24 returned in 2014 with the event series 24: Live Another Day. This followed the same real-time format and starred Sutherland, but the season spanned only 12 episodes, as opposed to the usual 24.
While the format was compelling, at least back when the show debuted in 2001, it was the character of Jack Bauer that proved to be the driving force behind the entire series. Whether it can stand out without him remains to be seen.