A lot of Arrested Development fans have something of a complex relationship with the series’ fourth season, which debuted on Netflix in 2013. The season was structured very oddly, consisting of 15 episodes of varying lengths, without commercial breaks, with each episode focused on a specific character and the large ensemble cast rarely all in the same room at the same time. And on top of that, it was as though Arrested Development was gone for seven years, came back in a flash, and then was gone again.
Creator Mitch Hurwitz and various cast members have been promising a fifth season pretty much since the fourth one ended, one often delayed but still, according to most reports, always on the verge of happening once everyone’s busy schedules can be aligned. But now Hurwitz has made a different surprising statement about the series, and specifically that nontraditional structure.
Hurwitz, in an interview with IndieWire at the Television Critics Association press tour this week, revealed that he has cut together a “remix”- cutting together the footage from the fourth season into 22 22-minute episodes - all of which feature the entire cast in every episode.
The impetus for doing the cut was that Hurwitz was told season 4’s episodes would likely be butchered, in the event of the show ever entering syndication. So he cut the episodes into more traditional lengths himself, spending nights in the editing room during his day job as executive producer of another Netflix show, Lady Dynamite (whose star, Maria Bamford, had a role in Season 4.) The new edit isn’t slated for release yet, but Hurwitz said he hopes the episodes willshow up on Netflix in the event a fifth season comes about.
While the fourth season of Arrested Development had its moments, that strange structure was somewhat off-putting and made the show not feel like the Arrested Development of old. Perhaps if Hurwitz’s cut ever sees the light of day, however, it might be worth giving the season another look.
Then again, if the release of the 22-minute cut is contingent on a fifth season happening, it may not be a good idea to get your hopes up, since that’s been promised for a very a long time with no guarantee yet of it coming to fruition.
The four existing seasons of Arrested Development are all streaming on Netflix