It’s been more than two years since we’ve seen a new episode of Arrested Development, the cult favorite Fox sitcom that was revived by Netflix in 2013, and it seems that, like clockwork, we get assurances every few months that a fifth season of the show will in fact happen. Just last month, producer Brian Grazer said Season 5 was on the way, with production starting as early as January of next year, but then things went dormant again. Now, Netflix is stepping in to assure fans that the Bluths will be back.
At the Television Critics Association summer press tour on Tuesday, Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos promised the streaming service is working toward making Season 5 happen. It just happens to be a complicated process.
“We are plugging along,” Sarandos said. “It’s a very long complex deal to make for these guys both because the talent is very busy and working on other shows, but also because the show is owned by Fox… It is our intent to have a new season of Arrested Development. All the negotiations are underway.”
If that sounds like kicking the can down the road to you, it shouldn’t, because all the people behind Arrested Development really are crazy busy, in no small part because of the show’s endless acclaim. Creator Mitch Hurwitz is at work developing other shows for Netflix, including one with comedian Maria Bamford, while Grazer and his producing partner Ron Howard (who’s also the show’s narrator) are two of the business showbusiness people on the planet. Then, of course, you’ve got Jessica Walter working on Archer, Tony Hale working on Veep, Jeffrey Tambor working on Transparent, Will Arnett working on Bojack Horseman (which just got renewed today), and the list goes on. It was famously tough to get the entire cast in one room to shoot Season 4, and they’re all even busier now, so you can image why Season 5 might take a while.
Still, Netflix is on it, so it seems all we have to do is wait…and rewatch the entire series another six or seven times.