Late Friday, Netflix announced that they had struck a deal with 20th Television and Imagine Television to create new episodes of ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT beginning in 2013. This could have huge repercussions across the board. Netflix assuredly hopes that this makes people forget about their recent mis-steps and Hulu has got to be wondering how they missed getting a seat at the table. Does it also get messy when formats and structure change to enable the best streaming experience?
Over the past few months, the murmurs had been growing that there would be a feature version of ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT with a limited series of sorts to lead up to its release. The fan base for the show is strong and had been clamoring for something like this for some time. The show does well on DVD and via streaming because of that fan base and the fact that the rest of the sitcom universe caught up to what AD was doing years ago. When the show came out, there were few single camera sitcoms and the type of comedy was more “mature” than most – not in terms of the M rating for nudity, language and such, but just perhaps more cerebral. Now, there are at least a half-dozen shows on broadcast and cable that carry the same tone and style finding high ratings and an enlarged fan base.