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24 producer promises "unhappy ending" for Jack Bauer

Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer in 24

Story by Jack Foley

HOWARD Gordon, executive producer of 24, has promised an unhappy ending for Kiefer Sutherland’s Jack Bauer when the series finishes its run later this month.

Speaking to US trade publication The Hollywood Reporter, Gordon revealed: “(It) leaves him in a compromised place morally, ethically and emotionally. This show is a tragedy and to give Jack a happy ending didn’t feel authentic.”

The show’s writers have long suggested that Bauer couldn’t possibly have a happy send off, even though the CTU government agent has saved the world countless times and been thanked for his efforts with any number of personal tragedies, including the death of loved ones.

Gordon, however, refused to be more specific on just how Bauer will bow out… although being killed off is highly unlikely as a movie version of 24 is very much in the works.

A first draft of a script has been written, according to Gordon, and a second one is in the works.

“We’re honouring the series and the creative integrity of (Bauer) and then possibly bringing in a whole new group (of characters),” he continued. “What I do think is important is that we do not retread over old ground.”

The final episode of Day 8 -and 24 as a TV series] is due to air in the US on May 24, and on Sky1 a couple of weeks later.

And Gordon added: “The writers are taking him to a place he’s never been before.”

24 began as a novel concept for TV in 2001, given that the entire season elapsed in 24 fictional hours, with each one-hour episode being one hour of a day.

It has since won an Emmy for best drama [in 2006] and Sutherland was given a Golden Globe for acting [in 2002].

Season 8, which began in January, found Bauer contemplaying retirement with his grand-daughter before being drawn back into action in order to help foil a plot to murder a Middle Eastern peace-keeper.