Before news of a fourth season of “Arrested Development” came out, there was the fervent anticipation of an ensemble film. Now that the new season is almost upon us, the film still remains the more talked-about prize. Creator Mitch Hurwitz, Jeffrey Tambor and Will Arnett came to SXSW over the weekend to discuss the film and, most importantly, to explain the circumstances surrounding the future of the show.
“There’s a reason this kind of thing doesn’t happen more often,” Hurwitz explained of his show’s return. “Shows don’t reunite because television doesn’t work that way. There’s no profit model and people go off to do other work.” The combined problems were likely the ones Netflix CEO Reed Hastings pointed to when he called the fourth season “non-repeatable” and a “one-off,” but Hurwitz is optimistic — somewhat in agreement — with that outlook.
“Here’s what we have: we have the whole story. The whole thing evolved because we wanted to do a movie and we have too much information,” he said, describing the update of every character alone as “eating halfway through the movie,” and creating the “anthology series” of the Netflix season. “[All] of this was to be act one of this bigger story that we have, in a lot of detail, actually, for the movie. What we don’t have is a movie deal. Know anybody?” he asked.
Hurwitz’ show is actually 20th Century Fox‘s property, and while the creator and cast “very much want to do it,” he wants to go down the proper channels to do so. “I’ve got to go through the steps, I’ve got to pitch it to them, they’re probably going to need to see a script first, which is not how we’ve done it in television. In television you just do a pilot and then you’ve got a series and you’re doing it every week, so this is probably going to go through some approval process.”
Before that procedure is done though, Arnett made a good point about the result we currently have in front of us: namely, 14 episodes of “Arrested Development” premiering on Netflix in May. “We do have these fourteen episodes that are about to air, and people are already mad that we don’t have the other — nobody’s even seen these,” he said. “Let’s just enjoy this for now.” [Indiewire/Vulture]