DAMMIT, as Jack Bauer would say. According to Deadline the anticipated movie based on the long-running FOX political drama 24 has been delayed. In December things finally started to line up for the big screen adaptation: 20th Century Fox was overseeing Mark Bomback’s tweaking of Billy Ray’s original script, potential directors were being scouted, and star Kiefer Sutherland was publicly enthusiastic about slipping into Bauer’s shoes once more. The plan was to begin production in April, when Sutherland was on break from shooting the upcoming FOX show Touch. But things quickly unravelled shortly after 20th Century’s proposal for the film was addressed. In addition to budgetary concerns, the studio has ultimately decided to hold off on starting production on the 24 movie this year because it believes that there won’t be enough time to complete the project before Sutherland is forced back into Touch (assuming the Tim Kring drama is picked up for a second season). In other words, they don’t want to rush it.
Though this news is unfortunate for 24 fans all over, it’s not devastating. Imagine Entertainment’s Brian Grazer is still producing, Sutherland is still on board to reprise Bauer, and Bomback/Ray’s script is “ready to go,” per Deadline. So 24 the movie is on track to get made, it’s just a matter of when, again.
Update: Sutherland guested on The Tonight Show on Thursday and addressed the recent delay, saying that he’s still determined to get the ball rolling on production of the film sooner rather than later. Video sits after the break.