Friday, May 28, 2010

Jack Bauer on the Silver Screen

So 24 is no more. Or, to be precise, the TV series called 24 is no more. After eight seasons of fighting foreign terrorists, weasley bureaucrats, and evil politicians, CTU agent Jack Bauer's run has ended.

When we last saw Jack, he had avenged the brutal killing of his girlfriend and, in so doing, brought down the presidency. In the final scene, he was given a head-start to flee the country.

Yes, the show is over, but, the word from 24's producers (including Kiefer Sutherland) is that the franchise will make the leap to the movie screen. Jack will be somewhere in Europe, fighting terrorists and saving the day.

Sounds good...but will it work?

There have been many attempts to translate a beloved TV show to the Big Screen, almost always a failure. Look at the miserable turd they made from the excellent landmark 1960's TV series I Spy starring Bill Cosby and the late great Robert Culp.

So here's the question: Can it be done? Can a great TV series like 24 be successfully translated to the Big Screen?

In the case of 24, I think they have a chance to succeed, especially with the success of the movie Taken, and the vacuum left by the Bourne series. Audiences clearly want to see a lone man with skills take on the bad guys.

Can a show as unique as 24 survive the move from the TV set to the theatrical film level? Due to its "real-time" concept of a day-in-the-life of Jack Bauer, 24 pulsed with an energy that made its rabid fans return week after week. I wonder how that is going to work in a two-hour format?

Whatever they hatch, one thing Keifer and Company can count on is that its loyal fans, which includes me, will be lining up to buy a ticket.

Posted by Terrence Seamon, May 28, 2010

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