Fox Mulls More '24' — Without Kiefer Sutherland; Returns for 'X-Files,' 'Prison Break'

Dana Walden told reporters that producers are crafting a new '24' run that could be without its star.
Chris Raphael/FOX

Fox is mulling the returns of The X-Files, Prison Break and another run of 24, though the latter could come back without leading man Kiefer Suthlerland.

Speaking to reporters Saturday at the Television Critics Association's winter press tour, Fox Television Group chairmen and CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman noted that the network — currently in a rebuilding mode — has had conversations to revive The X-Files with Chris Carter as well as potentially a limited run of Prison Break.

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As for the future of 24 — which was revived last summer as a limited series with Suthlerland at its center — Newman and Walden said there were no current plans for another run, but the network has heard a pitch for another run for 2016.

"We would love nothing more than to do another 24. That's a constant focus for us," Newman said from the stage.

Following their panel, Walden told reporters that the duo — who oversee the studio and developed 24, Prison Break and X-Files — that 24 producers Howard Gordon, Evan Katz and Manny Coto are focusing on development but have pitched them a version of the series that "could have gone either way" with Sutherland.

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The actor has been vocal about his desire to retire from his starring role as Jack Bauer, and Fox has discussed returning the series without him.

"We have discussed it with him," Walden said. "Potentially, he won't be in this installment — we're not sure yet. We're not that far along, but I know he supports us doing more 24. We're not talking about continuing the show without him; we're talking about whether there's one installment that he's not in."

She stressed that the format of 24 with its real-time element will be enough to keep viewers hooked on the series. "I think great characters with that creative team … I look at everyone that surrounded Kiefer in that last installment — I think it could work," she said, noting they plan to again take their time with another revival.

"[The pitch] was in the very origin stages and it could have gone either way," Walden said. "There was a point at which Jack Bauer could come in and fit very organically into their story or they were prepared to do something that would be the one installment without him."

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As for a revival of The X-Files, Walden stressed that it's a timing issue with creator Carter (whose Amazon series The After was canceled ahead of its premiere) and stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, who would all have to return to reboot the cult hit.

"We've had some conversations on X-Files and we're hopeful that we'll bring that back," Newman told the press, noting that there was nothing that he and Walden could announce at this stage.

As for Prison Break, Newman has made it clear that they would love to bring the show starring Dominic Purcell and Wentworth Miller back for another run, though Fox had nothing to report.

"There's some speculation in the press at Prison Break and we've made it clear at the studio that we'd bring Prison Break back at the studio," Newman said. "It's the perfect event series. But at the moment, we have nothing else to report."

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