'Arrested Development' officially returning for Season 5 on Netflix
By Elizabeth Wagmeister
May 17, 2017 | 10:28 AM
It's official: "Arrested Development" is coming back for Season 5 on Netflix, Variety has learned.
The streaming service has greenlit a much-anticipated fifth season of the family comedy, which is set to launch in 2018. Original creator Mitchell Hurwitz is back, along with the entire series regular cast, including Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, Jeffrey Tambor, Jessica Walter, Will Arnett, Tony Hale, Portia de Rossi, David Cross and Alia Shawkat.
The fifth season news comes after much teasing from Netflix, Hurwitz and various cast members over the past few years, saying that a new season would be coming, but talent scheduling was delaying the renewal. After airing for three seasons on Fox from 2004-2006, the sitcom went to Netflix for a fourth season in 2013. The show never had significant broadcast ratings, but garnered widespread critical acclaim and was nominated for 25 Emmy Awards, winning six.
"In talks with Netflix we all felt that that stories about a narcissistic, erratically behaving family in the building business -- and their desperate abuses of power -- are really underrepresented on TV these days," said Hurwitz in a comical statement on Wednesday. "I am so grateful to them and to 20th TV for making this dream of mine come true in bringing the Bluths, George Sr., Lucille and the kids; Michael, Ivanka, Don Jr., Eric, George-Michael, and who am I forgetting, oh Tiffany. Did I say Tiffany? -- back to the glorious stream of life."
"'Arrested Development' brings us structures, outerwear and choreography like no other comedy in history," mused Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos, leafing through photos of the banana stand, never nudes and Chicken Dances. "Season 4 marked the first foray by Netflix into original comedy programming and this time, the Bluths will collectively be spending more quality time with their millions of fans around the world."
Fox Television Group Chairmen and CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman commented, "'Arrested Development' remains one of the iconic franchises we, Ron and Brian are asked about most. It's a testament to the brilliance of Mitch's creation, the passion of his audience, and the love his cast holds in their hearts for his writing and characters that we have been able to 'get the band back together ' not once but twice since the Emmy-winning original run. Get ready, America. The Bluths are coming back."
Hurwitz will serve as executive producer with Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, Jim Vallely and Richie Rosenstock. Imagine TV and 20th Century Fox Television are producing for Netflix.
"I love working with Mitch. He is a genius and the rarest of original thinkers. He brings a richness to the characters and the storylines that makes the series memorably fun," Grazer said.
Howard added, "Whew! I can finally answer the question … Hell yes! Warming up my uncredited narrator vocal chords. Now the only thing I will have to be coy about is all the craziness the Bluths are going to face this season."
"Arrested Development" centers around Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman) and his eccentric family comprised of his son George-Michael (Michael Cera), his father George Bluth Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor), his mother Lucille (Jessica Walter), his brothers George Oscar Bluth II (Will Arnett), Buster Bluth (Tony Hale) and sister Lindsay Funke (Portia de Rossi), and Lindsay's husband Tobias (David Cross) and their daughter Maeby (Alia Shawkat).