We're all happy to finally be receiving a new season of Arrested Development after all this time - seven years! - but, if any of the episodes have some continuity issues, cut creator Mitch Hurwitz some slack: Scheduling times to film with the cast was harder than it sounds, so much of the season was filmed at different times with some actors even appearing against a green-screen so they could later be digitally added ton their scenes.
In a new interview with Rolling Stone, Hurwitz explained the meticulous editing that had to go in to making the season seem seamless as opposed to, well, half shot on a green-screen over the course of a few months:
All of a sudden, The Munsters or whatever that was called. Mockingbird Lane takes off on NBC. We were like, "OK, we gotta shoot all of Portia [de Rossi]'s stuff in August." We thought we were going to lose her. [Mockingbird Lane wasn't picked up.] So I'm quickly rewriting everything. I'm writing that stuff first, even though that was supposed to happen later. So the whole thing was an incredible act of organization. I'm so exhausted, 'cause it really was about two years of trying to keep what was blossoming into a very complex story in my head at one time.
We ended up with an eight-hour movie of Arrested Development where the pieces do kind of come together. Not only was the show told out of sequence, it was shot out of sequence. Half of the stuff is on green screen. There are scenes where there are two characters talking to each other. On one side, it's Jason Bateman in July, and on the other side it's Portia in November. It was these crazy, crazy things where everybody had to say, "Wait, she hasn't gone to that party, so she wouldn't have that makeup on, therefore . . . "
Judging from the trailer for season four, the season looks fine - Hurwitz even says he's grateful for the opportunity to have a new season and it should be fine, though he's quick to add that it also has never been watched back-to-back in one sitting, like the majority of Netflix users will be doing come this Sunday:
I mean, it was just nonstop like that, and it still is. I just finished what's called offline editing three days ago. We had to be locked at four a.m. two or three days ago. I think we locked at 3:59 AM. In the final moments I was still saying, "Wait! He doesn't know about Buster! Let's move that line!" It was insane. [Laughs] This is, to me, one of the craziest things of this. Again, it's such a fortune that I get this opportunity, but this is an eight-hour show that has been tested in no way. No one has seen it. I haven't watched it back to back. Everyone has seen pieces of them, and we've been delivering them out of order. There's never been a screening of these back-to-back. I guess that's usually the case with television, right? You pick the pilot and then the rest of them are an episode, one at a time. But those episodes are pretty heavily vetted.
Really, as long as we have new episodes of this show, we're happy. Season four of Arrested Development will premiere on Netflix this Sunday, May 26th.
[via Rolling Stone]