'24' halts production

9:13 PM PST 02/14/2010 by Nellie Andreeva, AP

Star Kiefer Sutherland undergoes surgery

Fox's drama '24' has shut down production so star Kiefer Sutherland can undergo surgery for a ruptured cyst.

The rupture happened earlier last week but production continued through Friday with scenes that did not involve Sutherland, who also serves as an executive producer on the real-time drama.

Filming then was suspended until late this week when Sutherland is expected to return to work.

"While Kiefer Sutherland is frustrated to miss even one day of work, he and Fox decided together that it would be best to complete this minor elective procedure now," the actor's publicist said in a statement.

Added producing studio 20th TV, "We hope to resume production shortly and do not anticipate any disruption in the broadcast of this season's episodes."

Sutherland has been very conscious about his duties on the show. During the 2007-08 season, he opted to serve his full jail sentence stemming from his September 2007 drunk driving arrest in two installments to prevent any disruption to the series' production schedule.

The current eighth season of '24' is drawing a lot of attention as it could be the long-running show's last.
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