‘Arrested Development’ shocker: Season 5 splits like a banana, with Part 1 streaming May 29 and Part 2 launching ‘at a later date’

Huge news, “Arrested Development” fans. Netflix has confirmed to Gold Derby that the upcoming fifth season will be split in half, with Part 1 streaming May 29 and Part 2 launching “at a later date.” Previously everyone assumed that all of Season 5’s new episodes would drop at the same time, but we now know that’s not the case. Instead, only the first eight episodes will debut May 29, which is just in time for 2018 Emmy consideration as the eligibility period ends May 31. The second group of eight episodes, assuming they stream within the next eligibility cycle, will contend at the 2019 Emmys.

While the new season will be split in half, the cast won’t be. All nine series regulars will be back for Season 5: Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, Jeffrey Tambor, Jessica Walter, Will Arnett, Tony Hale, Portia de Rossi, David Cross and Alia Shawkat. Of note, Bateman, Arnett, Tambor and Walter are the only cast members to receive Emmy nominations in past seasons.

“Arrested Development” took home the Emmy Award for Best Comedy Series in 2004 in addition to winning Best Comedy Writing for creator Michell Hurwitz‘s work on the pilot episode. Season 1 also ran off with trophies for casting, directing and editing, while Season 2 won again for Best Comedy Writing (Hurwitz and James Valley) for “The Righteous Brothers” episode.

The intricate comedy series aired on Fox for its first three seasons (2003-06) before being canceled due to low ratings. Years later in 2013, Netflix revived the show for a fourth season of 15 extended episodes. Those installments were recently remixed by Hurwitz and re-released as “Arrested Development: Fateful Consequences” into 22 episodes, each about 22 minutes in length.

SEE Netflix revivals: Top 10 TV shows brought back to life include ‘Gilmore Girls,’ ‘Arrested Development’ …

Fans in Los Angeles and Seattle can visit the iconic Bluth Stair Car on May 17 and May 20, respectively. And Never Nude aficionados can meet fellow members of their support group at the Never Nude gatherings in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago and Philadelphia from May 19 to May 20. Get more details at votebluth.com/trail. You can watch the Season 5 trailer here.

Another Netflix comedy, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” is also being split this year, with Season 4 Part 1 streaming May 30 and Season 4 Part 2 launching at a later date. In the past, shows like “Mad Men,” “Breaking Bad” and “The Sopranos” had great luck at the Emmys by splitting up their final seasons. Essentially, this strategy gives the show two bites at the apple, so they get to appear at two consecutive Emmy cycles instead of just one.

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