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‘Arrested Development’ saga continues

EMMYSThe odd TV saga of “Arrested Development” continues later this month when on May 26, Netflix will post 15 new episodes of the long canceled series. It’s the fourth season that FOX opted not to make when it issued a death warrant in 2006 to the much heralded comedy.

If you don’t have “ADD” (Arrested Development Delirium), the comedy follows the messed up adventures of the Bluth family. It stars Jason Bateman, Portia de Rossi, Michael Cera, Alia Shawkat, Jason Bateman, Jessica Walter, Will Arnett and Jeffrey Tambor. Think “Modern Family” meets “Married With Children.”

Despite only airing 53 episodes, obsessed fans pushed for the show to move to another network or at least have a big screen movie. Neither happened and the show appeared to be headed to the TV graveyard. Then Netflix came along and now the fans will get more episodes.

Executive producer Mitch Hurwitz is slightly amazed the show found new life.

“I just kind of always held out hope that this would work out, and it was a very naive hope,” Hurwitz says.

One reason for his concern was that after seven years, cast members had gone their separate ways. Bateman and Cera have been busy with movies and Arnett has been bouncing through a series of TV shows. Rounding up the old gang was not going to be easy.

“he fact is that the family grew apart and everybody else kind of grew up and got on other shows and had contracts elsewhere. The only way we could get everybody together for what we’ll call loosely an anthology or a series was to kind of dedicate each episode to a different character’s point of view and that became a really fun, interesting, engaging, creative challenge, because we started finding out that the stories would intersect,” says Hurwitz.

And, that’s how “Arrested Development” found new life when most had written it off as just another good TV series that died before its time.

Responses to "‘Arrested Development’ saga continues"

Heather P says:

You know, a lot of people criticize Netflix’s data-mined programming strategy, but if it shows them the demand and it gives producing teams like Hurwitz’s the ability to fulfill the demand in creative ways – like the different structure of Arrested Development’s fourth season – I say, more power to them!

Even the Netflix “House of Cards”, which was data-mined conceived within an inch of its life, required writers and producers to create a product that would fit the bill to the best of their ability. Producing quality content within set limitations can foster some terrific creativity.

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