As Arrested Development Season 5 inches closer to fruition at Netflix, hopefully undoing the mixed reactions to Season 4's disjointed narrative, it seems the Bluth family might have been in a very different state once upon a time. Executive David Nevins reveals that the series very nearly went to Showtime after its FOX cancellation, if not for a few key disagreements.

As outlined by The Wrap from his recent Q&A at the Paley Center for Media in Los Angeles, then-FOX executive David Nevins dealt extensively with Showtime to find the series a new home, noting that the premium cable outlet made a “really aggressive” play for the Bluths:

They were offering all the freedom that we didn’t have. You can do 10 episodes one season. You can do 12 episodes another season. You can do 23 minutes. You can do 29 minutes … And for a variety of reasons–largely deal-driven–it never quite came to be.

Rumors persisted over the years, as Nevins moved up the Showtime ranks to become the network head, though Netflix eventually won the bid to reunite the since-prolific cast. Last we heard, Showrummer Mitch Hurwitz was staffing writers to determine a structure and episode order for Season 5, likely less than the seventeen producer Brian Grazer promised would begin production in early 2016.

One wonders what might have become of Arrested Development, had the reunion come together more quickly at Showtime, but were the Bluths worth the wait? Will Season 5 restore Arrested Development to its former glory, assuming it ever comes together?

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