Jennifer Westfeldt, Kiefer Sutherland

Despite reports that time ran out on the project over scheduling and budget disputes, the clock is still ticking for a 24 feature film to finally get made, says executive producer Howard Gordon.

Gordon tells TV Guide Magazine that plans are definitely moving forward on the long-awaited movie version of the popular Fox series, which would give Jack Bauer a mere two hours or so to save the world. The film had been expected to begin production in May, but recent reports have suggested the studio, 20th Century Fox, had let the project lapse after conflicts over the budget and difficulty finalizing both a shooting schedule and a paycheck for star Kiefer Sutherland. But Gordon says the film, like its hero, remains alive at the end of the day.

Kiefer Sutherland Talks 24 Movie

"The status was, I would say as recently as a week or two ago, pretty positive that it was going to happen as early as this May and everyone was racing to get that to happen," Gordon says. "And I think Kiefer and Fox — everyone — decided because of everyone's schedule it was not a good thing to rush. No one wanted to rush it.

"It was kind of a collective decision not to do it," adds Gordon, who produces two current TV series, Showtime's Homeland and NBC's Awake. "And it was really like, 'Let's take a beat. Let's do this next time. Let's take the script that we like and let's make it better. And let's do it with a little more composure.'"

The 24 film's script, explains Gordon, is in good shape but will benefit for more polishing as schedules are hammered out. "I was very happy with it, but it needed more work," he says. "And I think everyone feels like if we're going to do it, we're going to do it really well. I mean, there's no point in doing the movie as an exercise or as a nostalgia piece. We wanted to make it something that can stand on its own."

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