Kiefer Sutherland will return to television in ABC’s “Designated Survivor,” described as part family drama and part conspiracy thriller.
Deadline reports the project, written on spec by David Guggenheim (“Safe House”) was given a straight-to-series order. Simon Kinberg will executive produce for the Mark Gordon Company alongside Guggenheim.
The show’s title refer to the term used for a member of the United States Cabinet who’s kept at a distant, secure and undisclosed location when the President, the Vice President and other Cabinet members are gathered in one location, such as for the State of the Union or the inauguration. It’s ended to ensure continuity of government in the event of a catastrophe that kills the rest of the officials in the line of succession, leaving the designated survivor as the acting President.
In the series, Sutherland plays a lower-level Cabinet member who’s propelled to the presidency after an attack during the State of the Union address kills everyone above him in the line of succession.
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