'24': The clock officially stops after Day 8

kiefer-sutherland2-24-320.jpgThe world just got a little safer to the terrorists -- Jack Bauer is hanging up his man-purse on "24."

Via a statement from FOX: "In a joint decision made by 24's star and executive producer Kiefer Sutherland, executive producer and showrunner Howard Gordon, Twentieth Century Fox Television, Imagine Entertainment and Fox Broadcasting Company, it was determined that the acclaimed series will end its remarkable eight-season run."

Star Kiefer Sutherland says, "This has been the role of a lifetime, and I will never be able to fully express my appreciation to everyone who made it possible. While the end of the series is bittersweet, we always wanted 24 to finish on a high note, so the decision to make the eighth season our last was one we all agreed upon.

"This feels like the culmination of all our efforts from the writers to the actors to our fantastic crew and everyone at Fox. Looking ahead to the future, Howard Gordon and I are excited about the opportunity to create the feature film version of '24.' But when all is said and done, it is the loyal worldwide fan base that made it possible for me to have the experience of playing the role of Jack Bauer, and for that I am eternally grateful."

Executive producer and showrunner Howard Gordon says, "Kiefer and I have loved every minute of making 24, but we all believe that now is the right time to call it a day. I echo his sentiments of gratitude toward the show's amazing creative team, as well as the studio and network who have always believed in us and shown us unbelievable support."

The cast and crew have already started tweeting about the news.

Via Mary Lynn Rajskub's (Chloe) Twitter account: "Just found out we got the word officially. This is 24's last season."

Via Jon Cassar's Twitter account:
News from the 24 set,the crew has been told that 24 has come to an end. There will b no season 9. Its been a great run, thanx all 4 watching.

There has been speculation of this being the last season of "24" but this is the first official word. The last "24" clock tick will be
the two-hour season finale on Monday, May 24 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

However, look for the "24" feature film. Star Sutherland tells EW, "We both felt strongly that there has been a demand and an interest in a "24" film, which would be a two-hour representation of a 24-hour day, so we felt it was time to move in that direction."

It sounds like the plans for the "24" movie are still in the works, so hopefully this isn't the last we've seen of Jack Bauer.

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Photo credit: FOX