New series of Arrested Development to air on Netflix

News Gem Wheeler
24 Apr 2012 - 08:58

The long-awaited movie? A Netflix-distributed new series? Just what is the plan for the future of Arrested Development?


Still can’t quite believe it’s coming back? A little bit of doubt is understandable, even now. After Fox brought Arrested Development to an abrupt close back in 2006, the show’s devoted fanbase waited eagerly for some hint that it might, after all, find a new home on a network such as Showtime. The last episode of the series even hinted at a possible movie. Sadly, nothing came of the rumours, and our beloved show seemed to have entered a long afterlife of cult status, DVD marathons and those endless quote sessions. 

Six years later, everything’s changed. Apart from the quoting, that is. When I said ‘endless’, I really did mean it.

Arrested Development will, as we now know, be back at some point in 2013, courtesy of Netflix. After several months of speculation about the exact form the show will take on its return, a session at the Netflix-sponsored National Association of Broadcasters Convention in Las Vegas clarified matters. Creator Mitch Hurwitz appeared alongside stars Will Arnett, David Cross, Jeffrey Tambor, Alia Shawkat and Jessica Walter to discuss the situation, and revealed one or two rather interesting developments. 

Instead of getting our AD fix over the course of a few months, this time the full ten-episode season will be bestowed upon us in one glorious burst. Hurwitz’s rationale for this change is interesting. If there’s one thing AD’s famous for, it’s the idea of callbacks – or indeed, call-forwards; this show’s nothing if not complicated – where characters, situations and gags from different episodes are subtly referenced by new jokes. Hurwitz suggested that the immediate availability of all the new episodes might make this allusion-spotting process even more fun for eagle-eyed fans. The spoiler-ific nature of the internet raises a few concerns, but Hurwitz pointed out that ‘the twists really aren’t as important as the characters’. Expect Twitter to explode, regardless...

Funnily enough, the movie that sparked all the initial talk of a revival now seems to have sunk under the radar. The new episodes will not now focus on individual family members, a move that was initially intended to prepare the ground for the film. Instead, the show’s format will apparently remain much as it was the first time around. Hurwitz did, however, mention that he was eager to bring more seasons of the show to Netflix. No need for any strongly worded letters just yet, then.  

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