It's a Christmas (or Hanukkah or Kwanza or Festivus) miracle! The long-awaited new season of Arrested Development commissioned by Netflix will be expanded to include a reported 12–15 episodes. Originally slated to film ten new episodes, creator Mitch Hurwitz ended up shooting a plethora of extra material during production and then plotted out ideas for additional scenes and storylines. When Hurwitz, 20th Century Fox TV, and Imagine TV approached Netflix with his plans, they agreed to increase the order for the fourth season of the cult comedy to a possible twelve to fifteen episodes. "We are thrilled with the direction of the show, with the footage we have seen and with the relationship between Mitch, Imagine, 20th and Netflix," stated a spokeswoman for Netflix. "At this time, we are not confirming or announcing the final episode count but we are sure fans will be thrilled when we do."
Due to the complicated nature of an ensemble cast with their own busy individual schedules, 20th Century decided to pause production until early next year. The break in filming will also give Hurwitz the opportunity to review the existing footage and take his time figuring out how to incorporate the additional material he has in mind. Once that process is complete, the studio will begin securing the actors needed to fill out the season, tentatively set to resume production in late January. The highly anticipated new season of Arrested Development is targeted for a spring premiere, when Netflix will roll out all of the new episodes at the same time.
This has got to be great news for fans of the show who have waited nearly 10 years for a new season. It's also good to hear that Mitch Hurwitz will be able to carefully plan out how to add the new material instead of rushing into writing and filming extra episodes. Hopefully he won't be sacrificing quality for quantity.