It’s been a good year for those who never recovered from the 2006 cancellation of “Arrested Development”. Not only is the quirky sitcom going to hit the big screen, but get another season on television.
Jason Bateman, who plays the show’s main character, confirmed the news via Twitter on Sunday, “It’s true. We will do 10 episodes and the movie. Probably shoot them all together next summer for a release in early ’13. VERY excited!”
The series, which had three seasons, follows the widowed Michael Bluth as he tries to keep his formerly wealthy, dysfunctional southern California family together after they’ve lost all their money. Bluth’s son George Michael, portrayed by awkward duck Michael Cera, tries to maintain good morals and behave well yet is easily manipulated by troublemaker cousin Maeby (Alia Shawkat). Comedian Will Arnett has the role of Michael’s brother Gob, a Segway-riding failed magician. Michael’s twin sister, played by Portia de Rossi, is a self-absorbed, materialistic princess who has short-lived interests in social issues.
“Arrested Development” creator Mitch Hurwitz told the Sunday New York Times that the new season will lead directly into the film, “We’re trying to do a limited-run series into the movie … We’re basically hoping to do nine or 10 episodes, with almost one character per episode.”
Hurwitz added that working on the flick made him realize there was more to be done with the “Arrested Development” story.
“I have been working on the screenplay for a long time and found that as time went by, there was so much more to the story,” Hurwitz told The Times. “In fact, where everyone’s been for five years became a big part of the story. So in working on the screenplay, I found even if I just gave five minutes per character to that back story, we were halfway through the movie before the characters got together.”
Ever since its cancellation five years ago, “Arrested Development” has become a wildly popular DVD item and attracted a large community of viewers. The show’s Facebook fan page boasts more than one million fans.
This summer in a podcast, Arnett confirmed the rumor that “Arrested Development” would make the leap to the big screen.
“We are gonna make the ‘Arrested Development’ movie,” Arnett said. “And [creator] Mitch Hurwitz, who is really just a brilliant, brilliant guy, is in the process right now of concocting something that’s really kind of unexpected, I think, that I really don’t want to give away, but I think the fans are going to be really satisfied.”
Bateman told The New York Times that he anticipates the projects will begin filming during the summer of 2012.
“There’s business left to be done, but creatively we are all on board and have a very specific plan about how it would come out and what we would do and when we would shoot it,” Bateman said. “I think we’re targeting next summer to shoot it.”