'24' Plans Premiere Date, Shocking Resurrection
Tony Almeida's back!
Following the trend established over the past two years, "24" will launch its seventh day with a two-night premiere event. The season will kick-off on Sunday, Jan. 13 with two hours starting at 8 p.m. before settling into its regular time period with a new episode at 9 p.m. the following night.
From there, "24" will stay on Mondays at 9 p.m. airing original episodes into June.
While the premiere date is bound to be exciting for "24" fans, that's nothing compared to the first official confirmation of the return of Tony Almeida. The CTU veteran, played by Carlos Bernard, was one of Jack Bauer's main allies over the show's first four seasons, but the character -- initially revered for his prodigious soul-patch -- was left unceremoniously dead at the hands of a terror suspect in Day 5.
"Tony's uncertain fate near the end of 'Day 5' left the door open for his return," says executive producer/show-runner Howard Gordon. "And since there was no silent clock at the conclusion of his last appearance –- the 24 tribute to a major character's demise – we always kept this as a possibility."
Although Tony's fate didn't appear so uncertain at the time, fans have kept alive the hope of the character's eventual return. Producers admitted that one possible ending for the show's much-maligned sixth season featured Tony showing up as a cliffhanger.
Instead, FOX just says that Tony's arrival will coincide with the beginning of Jack's seventh day, which will move the show's action from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C.
Other new additions to the "24" cast this season include Cherry Jones, Janeane Garofalo and Colm Feore, plus Annie Wersching, Jeffrey Nordling, John Billingsley and Rhys Coiro.
Although CTU has been disbanded as the season begins, the characters played by Mary Lynn Rajskub and James Morrison will be back.