Entertainment & Arts

Arrested Development: Filming starts on new series

Cast of Arrested Development
Image caption Rumours of a reunion have circulated since the show was cancelled in 2006

The cast of Arrested Development have reunited for the first day of filming on a new series of the formerly-cancelled sitcom.

Star Jason Bateman tweeted a picture from the set, commenting: "First day. Away we go..."

All 10 of the principal cast, including Portia De Rossi, Michael Cera and Will Arnett, will return in the new series.

The comedy series was cancelled by TV network Fox in 2006. It has since been resurrected by pay-TV service Netflix.

The sitcom tells the story of the spoiled, wealthy Bluth family who lose everything when their father is sent to prison - and the one son who tries to hold them together.

Image caption Star Jason Bateman tweeted a photo as filming started

It won six Emmy awards, including outstanding comedy series in 2004, but struggled to find an audience.

Creator Mitch Hurwitz later said the show's multiple storylines had been "confusing", and its warring characters had alienated US audiences.

"We tried showing the deep disdain that connects a family. We wanted to hold up a mirror to American society... America looked away," he told The Guardian.

Ten episodes will be filmed for the new series, all of which will be released simultaneously on Netflix next year.

Rather than recreate the inter-linking storylines of the original, each new story will focus on one character.

Producer and narrator Ron Howard will also return. He signalled his involvement by tweeting a picture from the writers' room last month.

"It's ALIVE," joked the former Happy Days star, who went on to direct Hollywood blockbusters The Da Vinci Code, A Beautiful Mind and Apollo 13.

Netflix, which started life as a DVD-by-post service, has recently begun to commission its own original content.

Image caption Show creator Mitch Hurwitz is seen in Howard's photograph of the writers' room

As well as Arrested Development, it has also acquired the rights to a US remake of BBC drama House Of Cards, which will be produced by David Fincher and Kevin Spacey.

The service, which accounts for up to 30% of all US internet traffic, launched in the UK this year, where it faces competition from LoveFilm and Sky's NowTV.

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