Arrested Development movie not dead or alive

by Paul William Tenny

Arrested DevelopmentA handful of normally trusth-worthy blogs got prematurely excited last fall when they heard that an Arrested Development screenplay was "in development" and had some or all of the original cast "attached". They took this to mean that a movie was in development and that things were moving forward, which wasn't true.

I wrote then that:

Hundreds of movies reach this stage per year, maybe a thousand for all I know, because it's relatively cheap to pay someone to write a script and consequence free for actors to "commit" themselves to a movie they want to be in, in spirit, but that's entirely different than signing a contract. If this movie were imminent these people would be locked up by contract so that they'd be available for production and the script would already be done by that point.

Nothing else surfaced on this until last month, when actor David Cross told TV Squad that an Arrested Develpoment movie wasn't going to happen. He based that on too much time passing and people moving on to do other things.

Michael Shanks said roughly the same thing about the Stargate SG-1 DVD movies. I explained why I thought Michael was wrong, but that had more to do with the fragile financial state of MGM (still bad) than it did anything else.

This situation is different, but David Cross is still just as wrong as Michael Shanks was. First of all, a movie can't be dead that hasn't lived. There may have been a script in development at some point but that's pretty common, and not indicative of actual film production. But more importantly the arugment that too much time has passed is just plain stupid.

Will Smith is considering jumping back into the Men in Black franchise after it idled for more than eight years. Depending on when, or if, it goes into production, it could be closer to a decade. 19 years passed between Indiana Jones flims and I'm sure there are many other examples more extreme than that.

But Arrested Develpoment has only been off the air for about four years.

I know a lot of people would love to see this happen, so I'll give both sides something to think about. A script being written doesn't really mean anything, so don't get your hopes up when you hear that. And a movie isn't dead just because a certain amount of time has passed. An Arrested Develpoment film could come together out of nowhere or it could never happen.

If you hear about someone signing a contract for money, then you can get excited. No matter what you hear that's bad, it can always happen at any moment if the wind changes direction. Happens all the time.

Consider this, though. Ron Howard was a producer on the TV series. If he attached himself as a director, this movie would be greenlit instantly. If you really want it to happen, go bug him.

in Film


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