Years of patient (and not-so-patient) waiting are about to pay off for Arrested Development fans. However, since the announcement of new episodes, there has been little to no discussion about when – or even if – the film was officially a go.
This week, star Jason Bateman – who plays long-suffering family ringleader Michael – recently spoke with I Am Rogue and provided an update on the project.
Here's what he had to say:
The movie is not a done deal yet. In fact, I don't even think they've started making the deal for that yet … [The marketing] keeps saying it's a new season, but it's actually a bunch of episodes that set up the movie. It asks a bunch of questions that then the movie answers. So it's kind of a package. Unfortunately, there's probably going to be about a year, maybe year and a half gap between the two … It wasn't perfectly scheduled, but we were just happy to get together as soon as we could.
Fans no doubt share Bateman's enthusiasm for getting the ensemble cast back together, and even though the wait for the Arrested Development movie is likely to be a bit longer than a year and a half, it's nice to see that the cast is eager to return to their characters one more (perhaps final) time.
We already know that the upcoming season 4 was designed to serve as a precursor to a potential follow-up film and that each episode will focus on a particular member of the Bluth clan. The innovative format to the season means that the viewing experience will likely be a change of pace from the show's previous seasons.
Regarding the season's format, Bateman recently appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live and offered some words of advice to fans.
I want people to manage their expectations. They are great episodes, but what they are not are episodes like it was when it was on that other network … Each character gets their own episode, and all the action happens at the same time. It only really works on Netflix, where these episodes are released the same day. So you can stop my episode if you see Gob run by on his Segway ... click over into his, watch where he's going … because it's all just act one. In the movie, it's going to be act two and act three, so it's going to be a hybrid package.
Based on Bateman's comments, it does seem – as speculation has indicated – that all involved may be waiting to see how season 4 of Arrested Development performs before signing any contracts or putting any money on the line for the planned big-screen follow-up. All this means is that there has been no better time for fans to show their support of the show - since the fate of the potential film is hanging in the balance.
Arrested Development season 4 premieres (at long last) on Netflix on May 26.