What could it cost Netflix to keep “Arrested Development” on the platform, 10 dollars? Whatever the cost, the streamer has paid, as the popular comedy series will remain on Netflix after originally being slated to depart this month.
A representative for Netflix confirmed the news to IndieWire. The streamer also announced the news on Twitter via a post on its official account Friday.
The Bluths aren’t going anywhere!
Arrested Development is staying on Netflix! And there’s only one way to celebrate: pic.twitter.com/NlrSoBYk8t
— Netflix (@netflix) March 24, 2023
Originally, all five seasons of “Arrested Development,” including the two seasons produced specifically on the streamer, were announced to leave Netflix on March 15 after a licensing deal between the company and 20th Television — which owns the show rights — expired. That never happened, and every episode of the show is still currently available to stream on the platform.
Netflix picked up “Arrested Development,” a beloved three-season Fox sitcom that ran from 2003 to 2006, for a revival in 2013. The entire cast returned for the season, and the two-part fifth and final season premiere on the streamer in 2018 and 2019. The revival was one of Netflix’s very first dives into original programming, coming the same year as the premiere of “House of Cards.”
The revival seasons were produced by Netflix with Imagine Entertainment and 20th Television. 20th Television is owned by Disney, so it was speculated that the Netflix seasons might make their way to the company’s Hulu streamer, where the first three seasons are currently streaming.
According to a Vulture report, Netflix and 20th Television reached a new licensing deal for the show, keeping it on Netflix.
What’s more, not only will the sitcom stay put on Netflix, but the new deal will also allegedly force Hulu to give up streaming rights to the first three seasons sometime later this year. This would make Netflix the exclusive streaming home for the entire series; considering how both of the revival seasons received mixed reviews and were the subject of intense controversy, and the first three are far more universally beloved, having total dibs on those initial seasons is likely a huge boon for Netflix.
“Arrested Development” starred Jason Bateman as Michael Bluth, the straight-laced son of a rich, dysfunctional family. After his father George Bluth (Jeffrey Tambor) is convicted of defrauding investors in the family’s real estate company, Michael is forced to help keep the now-struggling clan together. The ensemble cast of the series also included Portia de Rossi, Will Arnett, Michael Cera, Alia Shawkat, Tony Hale, David Cross, the late Jessica Walter, and Ron Howard as the narrator.