Netflix Resurrecting “Arrested Development” Exclusively for Streaming

After some major missteps in the past few months, Netflix finally has a proclamation to be proud of—the company announced Friday that it would be resurrecting the Emmy Award-winning series Arrested Development and bringing it exclusively to its instant streaming customers. The all-new episodes are starting production this year and should be available in 2013.

Arrested Development originally aired on the Fox network in 2003-2006. It received its Emmy after the first season and was named one of Time magazine’s “100 Best TV Shows of All-TIME.” Fans were deeply upset when it was canceled, feeling that the series was cut too soon. It remains one of the most inquired about titles.

Bees! - Scenes from Arrested Development

Fox has a history of successfully bringing back canceled series, including Family Guy and Futurama, and thinks that Arrested Development has similar potential.

“Bringing a classic show back to production on new episodes exclusively for Netflix customers is a game changer, and illustrates the incredible potential the new digital landscape affords great content providers like Twentieth Century Fox Television and Imagine,” Peter Levinsohn, Fox Filmed Entertainment’s President of New Media & Digital Distribution said in a statement.

This is the first time that Twentieth Century Fox Television and Imagine Television have entered an agreement to produce first-run episodes for Netflix. However, Netflix entered a similar contract for original content back in March for the Kevin Spacey production, House of Cards.

Having content providers such as Netflix offering original programming is another indicator of how the movie/television industry is changing. These types of agreements circumvent traditional players such as cable and satellite companies and other middlemen and puts Netflix in the same category as HBO, Showtime, and other networks.

Apple’s iTunes is another disruptor in this market. And if the rumors of an Apple television prove to be true, original content produced for exclusive digital distribution could upset the apple cart even further.