‘Arrested Development’ confirmed to return for fifth season

The show will return to Netflix in 2018

Arrested Development has been confirmed for a fifth season, according to reports.

Netflix revived the cult US comedy, which originally ran on Fox from 2003-2006, for a fourth season in 2015. That comeback season received mixed reviews upon its release.

Variety now reports that a fifth season of the show will air on the streaming service in 2018. All of the original cast (Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, Jeffrey Tambor, Jessica Walter, Will Arnett, Tony Hale, Portia de Rossi, David Cross and Alia Shawkat) have also been confirmed to return.

“In talks with Netflix we all felt that that stories about a narcissistic, erratically behaving family in the building business — and their desperate abuses of power — are really underrepresented on TV these days,” said creator Mitchell Hurwitz in a statement. “I am so grateful to them and to 20th TV for making this dream of mine come true in bringing the Bluths, George Sr., Lucille and the kids; Michael, Ivanka, Don Jr, Eric, George-Michael, and who am I forgetting, oh Tiffany. Did I say Tiffany? — back to the glorious stream of life.”

Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said: “Arrested Development brings us structures, outerwear and choreography like no other comedy in history. Season four marked the first foray by Netflix into original comedy programming and this time, the Bluths will collectively be spending more quality time with their millions of fans around the world.”

Fox Television Group Chairmen and CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman added: “Arrested Development remains one of the iconic franchises we, Ron [Howard] and Brian [Grazer] are asked about most. It’s a testament to the brilliance of Mitch’s creation, the passion of his audience, and the love his cast holds in their hearts for his writing and characters that we have been able to ‘get the band back together ‘ not once but twice since the Emmy-winning original run. Get ready, America. The Bluths are coming back.”

“I love working with Mitch. He is a genius and the rarest of original thinkers. He brings a richness to the characters and the storylines that makes the series memorably fun,” said executive producer Brian Grazer.

Meanwhile, Ron Howard said of the news: “Whew! I can finally answer the question… Hell yes! Warming up my uncredited narrator vocal chords. Now the only thing I will have to be coy about is all the craziness the Bluths are going to face this season.”

Rumours of a fifth season began circulating last July, when Netflix boss Ted Sarandos said that “it was only a matter of when.” Series creator Mitch Hurwitz also suggested that production on new episodes could begin in early 2017, promising fans that it was “very close” to happening.

Earlier this year, producer Brian Grazer gave an update on the new series.

“I think we’re really close to pulling it off finally,” Grazer said. “All of the actors have agreed to do it and I think they’ve agreed to their compensation structure. That’s been the hardest – it’s all hard… But it should be happening soon.”