Rumor control: 24 is ending, movie is next

Has the clock run out on Fox's 24?

That's the speculation at Variety:

Studio and network execs declined comment—but it's believed that the final decision will be made in the next day or two. Move is not a huge surprise, but still reps the end of an era for Fox. ...

But the cost of producing "24" has continued to increase, while ratings have dipped. A one-time critical darling, "24" has also received its share of knocks from reviewers this season.

The studio is said to be considering shopping "24" to other nets—but given the thriller's age and price tag, it's believed that the interest from other outlets will be limited.

But even as bell tolls for "24," the franchise is far from over. Sutherland and the "24" team have been keen on turning the show into a movie property, and have made major strides in recent months toward making that long-term goal a reality.

The trade paper said that the studio has even hired a writer, Billy Ray (State of Play), to draft a movie script.

Much as we enjoy the show, we think it's a good, um, time to sign off TV.

(And why is 24 sci-fi? Here's our answers.)

24 airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

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