News Column

Jack's Back in '24'

May 14, 2013

Ellen Gray

Fox has all kinds of plans for the 2013-14 season -- new dramas, new comedies, Gordon Ramsay critiquing kids' cooking -- but nothing else quite as big as this: Jack's back.

In a call with reporters yesterday before presenting his schedule to advertisers in New York, Fox Entertainment president Kevin Reilly confirmed reports that the Kiefer Sutherland thriller "24" was returning as a 12-hour "event" series, "24: Live Another Day."

Officially slated for summer 2014, it's likely to begin next May and be followed by another limited series, "Wayward Pines," the previously announced project from M. Night Shyamalan, Reilly said.

A 12-hour "24"? How's that work? They'll "skip hours," Reilly said. "It'll be dictated by the plot."

The "spine" of a typical "24" season was really about 12 hours, when most of the major plot points occurred, Reilly noted. He said that executive producer Howard Gordon also realized while trying to put together a "24" movie that it would also be hard to compress into two hours. (Sutherland also became more available with Fox's cancellation of "Touch.")

Other highlights of Fox's announcements yesterday:

-- It's ordered five new comedies and four new dramas for a season that Reilly said will be, more than ever, a year-round approach, with series of varying lengths premiering throughout the year.

-- Three of those comedies and two dramas premiere this fall.

-- Greg Kinnear will star in the midseason "Rake." Based on an Australian drama, it features Kinnear as a lawyer with problems not unlike those that plagued Hugh Laurie's character in "House." Also in midseason: The long-talked-about remake of the British comedy "Gavin and Stacy," titled "Us & Them," starring Jason Ritter and Alexis Bledel.

-- "New Girl" will get the post-Super Bowl slot, along with "a player to be named later," likely one of the new comedies.

-- "Bones" is moving again, starting the season at the 8 p.m. Mondays slot in the fall, then moving to 8 p.m. Fridays in "late fall."

-- There's no confirmation of judges other than Randy Jackson leaving "American Idol," but Reilly said it's "likely" there will be only three next season.

-- Besides "Touch," canceled shows include "The Cleveland Show," "Ben and Kate" and "The Mob Doctor."

-- New fall comedies include: "Dads," the first live-action show from Seth MacFarlane ("Family Guy," "American Dad") starring Giovanni Ribisi and Philadelphia's Seth Green as business partners whose lives are upended by their fathers (Martin Mull and Peter Riegert); "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," a comedy set in a police precinct that stars Andy Samberg ("Saturday Night Live") and Andre Braugher ("Homicide: Life on the Street"); and "Enlisted," a comedy about three brothers in the military.

-- New fall dramas include: "Sleepy Hollow," a modern-day retelling of the story of Ichabod Crane (Tom Mison), "resurrected and pulled 2 1/2 centuries through time to find that the world is on the brink of destruction and that he is humanity's last hope"; and "Almost Human," from J.J. Abrams ("Fringe," "Star Trek"), a cop show set 35 years in a future in which humans partner with androids.

-- Kids from 8 to 13 will be in the kitchen in the tentatively titled "Junior Masterchef," a spinoff of "Masterchef."

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