While season 4 of Netflix’s revival for the cult hit comedy show Arrested Development included less scenes with the main Bluth family all sharing the screen, it seems that the upcoming fifth season will not be taking this approach. When Netflix brought Arrested Development back to life in 2013 after FOX canceled the show in 2006, the fourth season divided fans due to the new narrative style. Show creator and runner Mitchell Hurwitz utilized an approach that had episodes focusing on certain members of the Bluth family to sidestep scheduling conflicts among the main cast.
After the divisive response to season 4, and no doubt in part to the continuing hectic nature of the cast members’ schedules, many fans wondered if season 5 was no longer a guarantee. Thankfully, Netflix and Hurwitz put those fears to rest earlier this year with an official announcement of a fifth season due in 2018. And while cast member Will Arnett has previously said that the cast would be spending much more time together, Alia Shawkat has now confirmed that there would plenty of scenes set in the famous Bluth house.
Speaking to Vulture (via Cinema Blend), Shawkat opened up about the forthcoming fifth season of Arrested Development and how the main cast dynamic would be closer to the original series than its preceding season, saying:
“They somehow were able to figure it out so it's a lot of us in the house again together. It's what the family is doing now that they're back together again, and where they came from. A lot more penthouse group hangs, which will be fun.”
This will certainly alleviate the concerns of fans who didn’t appreciate the flow or the general lack of ensemble scenes among the main cast that took place during season 4. With Hurwitz planning a murder mystery based on the presumed death of Lucille 2 (Liza Minnelli) at the end of last season, it will certainly be an interesting and fresh narrative for Arrested Development to try and win back uncertain fans.
As for when exactly season 5 could make its way to Netflix, the answer isn’t clear. A set photo was recently revealed and star Jason Bateman seemingly confirmed that filming began on August 8, but other than that, the only thing certain is that Arrested Development will return sometime in 2018. Who knows what surprises the cast and crew will have in store for fans in season 5 (maybe even the return of a certain Charlize Theron character), but it’s clear that Hurwitz and company want to bring Arrested Development closer to the styling of its first three seasons.