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Sources claim Arrested Development used green screens to edit the actors into scenes together due to scheduling conflicts

05.17.2013

In a very interesting story at BuzzFeed, sources claim that due to scheduling conflicts, many of the actors in the upcoming fourth season of ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT were filmed in front of a green screen and then edited in during post-production. While green screen is about as common in filmmaking these days as actors themselves, it does pose a question as to the quality of what the revived series will look like on Netflix.

According to the story, some scenes involving Henry Winkler's character don't look edited together at all while others are blatantly not filmed with the actors together:

Rivals Lucille Bluth (Jessica Walter) and Lucille Austero (Liza Minnelli) share the screen in at least one scene in the new season, but the characters, who are shown interacting in a restaurant, were not in the same room together, according to one source.

For that scene, the source described Hurwitz reading, off camera, Walter’s parts while Minnelli filmed her lines. The footage was later combined with footage Walter filmed alone. The result, says this source, is a mixed bag.

“It does look kind of like the Austin Powers stuff — you can tell that it was green screened,” said the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT is a brilliantly written series that benefited greatly from the improv skills of the actors in the cast. If you take that out of the equation I am sure the show will still be funny, but will it live up to the original run of episodes?

The fourth season is already taking the different approach of having each episode focus on a specific character with only Jason Bateman's character appearing in all episodes. This green screen could be a minor effect used for scenes that absolutely could not be filmed with all actors on a particular day, but it would be even more of a loss to have an episode with Bateman, David Cross, Portia De Rossi, and no appearance by Michael Cera. The show worked when everyone appeared together and now I am getting nervous this may be a lackluster return for ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT.

All episodes of the fourth season will begin streaming on May 26th.

Extra Tidbit: Maybe that Tobias Funke "Insert Me Anywhere" viral site was a veiled joke for the green screen this season.
Source: BuzzFeed

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3:29PM on 05/19/2013

On the fence...

Nothing would stop me from watching this season regardless. I would much rather they create the scenes and stories that they intended to, rather than work around over a dozen different actors schedules and come up with something compromised. I am just rejoicing that this reunion has happened at all.
Nothing would stop me from watching this season regardless. I would much rather they create the scenes and stories that they intended to, rather than work around over a dozen different actors schedules and come up with something compromised. I am just rejoicing that this reunion has happened at all.
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+1
6:49PM on 05/18/2013

AHH YES!!

Your RIGHT!! The Tobias "Insert me Anywhere" thing is totally a wink and a nod!! Interesting!!
Your RIGHT!! The Tobias "Insert me Anywhere" thing is totally a wink and a nod!! Interesting!!
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-2
2:43PM on 05/18/2013
Well, I was excited about new episodes, but after this bombshell of a revelation I don't know if I could look myself in the mirror if I watched them. In fact, I may have to burn the DVDs of the first three seasons in a show of outrage.
Well, I was excited about new episodes, but after this bombshell of a revelation I don't know if I could look myself in the mirror if I watched them. In fact, I may have to burn the DVDs of the first three seasons in a show of outrage.
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11:59AM on 05/18/2013

Synthespians

At least they are still using real actors! Have you seen the Audrey Hepburn in the chocolate ad - uncanny valley-high?
At least they are still using real actors! Have you seen the Audrey Hepburn in the chocolate ad - uncanny valley-high?
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9:45AM on 05/18/2013

Not improv

David Cross spoke about improv in AD on the Nerdist a while back. He said that there was almost no room for improvisation because their scripts were, like, 35+ pages per episode, which is insane to fit into 22 min.
David Cross spoke about improv in AD on the Nerdist a while back. He said that there was almost no room for improvisation because their scripts were, like, 35+ pages per episode, which is insane to fit into 22 min.
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+4
8:42AM on 05/18/2013
I'm just glad that Kitty is back. I love me some Judy Greer
I'm just glad that Kitty is back. I love me some Judy Greer
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10:32PM on 05/17/2013

A Non Issue

Anyone who knows anything about how movies are made knows this is a non issue. They did the same thing in certain scenes in Avatar. No one noticed. No one cared.
Anyone who knows anything about how movies are made knows this is a non issue. They did the same thing in certain scenes in Avatar. No one noticed. No one cared.
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7:44PM on 05/17/2013

Ah well.

It can't be worse than Season 3.
It can't be worse than Season 3.
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11:55PM on 05/17/2013
Season 3 had a lot of good episodes and some clever humor, especially after the Mr. F story was done. There were still some clever bits there as well.
Season 3 had a lot of good episodes and some clever humor, especially after the Mr. F story was done. There were still some clever bits there as well.
12:17AM on 05/18/2013
While I do agree that overall Season 3 was a bit of a disappointment in comparison to the ones that preceded it, it still had some great moments. The only thing I didn't like was the hair replacement storyline, and even then that is just because it really grossed me out... bleck.

You want to talk about Arrested Development sucking, you have to bring up "Ready, Aim, Marry Me." Worst episode of Arrested Development ever. Not even in a "bad Arrested Development, but good otherwise" kind of
While I do agree that overall Season 3 was a bit of a disappointment in comparison to the ones that preceded it, it still had some great moments. The only thing I didn't like was the hair replacement storyline, and even then that is just because it really grossed me out... bleck.

You want to talk about Arrested Development sucking, you have to bring up "Ready, Aim, Marry Me." Worst episode of Arrested Development ever. Not even in a "bad Arrested Development, but good otherwise" kind of way. Legitimately, that was a horrendous episode, and everyone should be ashamed for taking part in such a shitfest.

Buuut that's one episode out of 53 others (plus season four), so I obviously don't care all that much :P
7:21PM on 05/17/2013
green screen arrested development > no arrested development
green screen arrested development > no arrested development
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6:59PM on 05/17/2013
You're going on a story from BuzzFeed, which had no identified source attached to these allegations. Journalism at its finest.
You're going on a story from BuzzFeed, which had no identified source attached to these allegations. Journalism at its finest.
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+12
5:32PM on 05/17/2013
Who cares! And how reliable is the source? That's what I'd like to know. If you've watched AD as many times as I have, and believe me, I've seen every episode at least 70 times! When the characters are all on screen they don't always interact with each other. Tobias and Lucille actually share maybe 3 lines of dialogue out of all 3 seasons. George Michael and maeby barely have lines with George sr or gangie the show is centered on Michael bluth, period! His character is the back bone of the
Who cares! And how reliable is the source? That's what I'd like to know. If you've watched AD as many times as I have, and believe me, I've seen every episode at least 70 times! When the characters are all on screen they don't always interact with each other. Tobias and Lucille actually share maybe 3 lines of dialogue out of all 3 seasons. George Michael and maeby barely have lines with George sr or gangie the show is centered on Michael bluth, period! His character is the back bone of the show. Michael is the one character that has the most dialogue with the entire cast. This won't hurt these new ep's at all! If this is true.
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4:56PM on 05/17/2013

"Scheduling conflicts"?...

That seems an odd reason to me. If done well, this return could be one of the more significant turns that a good percentage of these actors have done in some time. Most certainly Liza Minnelli, of all people. I'd say un-conflict your schedule, unless what we're really hearing about here is somebody being a diva.
That seems an odd reason to me. If done well, this return could be one of the more significant turns that a good percentage of these actors have done in some time. Most certainly Liza Minnelli, of all people. I'd say un-conflict your schedule, unless what we're really hearing about here is somebody being a diva.
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4:50PM on 05/17/2013

That doesn't inspire confidence, but we'll see what happens.

I don't like the sound of this at all, but then again I also have never experienced it before either. Maybe it's something that sounds terrible in-theory to me but is actually pulled off really well.

This scares me a lot, but I won't say it's a bad idea until I see how well it's pulled off, or even if these reports have much water to them at all. Who knows? Maybe if I never read this headline, I would have watched the fourth season and not even bat an eye! Now I'll be looking for it, so
I don't like the sound of this at all, but then again I also have never experienced it before either. Maybe it's something that sounds terrible in-theory to me but is actually pulled off really well.

This scares me a lot, but I won't say it's a bad idea until I see how well it's pulled off, or even if these reports have much water to them at all. Who knows? Maybe if I never read this headline, I would have watched the fourth season and not even bat an eye! Now I'll be looking for it, so there's going to be bias regardless.

We'll see what happens.
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10:36PM on 05/17/2013
If you saw Avatar, you've experienced it. You've also seen variations of it in other films like Back to the Future Part II when Michael J. Fox appears as 3 different characters in the same shot.
If you saw Avatar, you've experienced it. You've also seen variations of it in other films like Back to the Future Part II when Michael J. Fox appears as 3 different characters in the same shot.
4:07PM on 05/17/2013

As Long As It Doesn't Look As Bad As...

... Those Catherine Zeta-Jones T-Mobile commercials or the Regis & Kelly TD Bank commercials. You could easily tell that Regis & Kelly were not filmed at the same time as well as Zeta-Jones not being filmed with the T-Mobile reps. I guess we can thank Lucas for this practice that he employed greatly on the prequels. In any case, this does not instill confidence in the quality of the new episodes. Yet, I hope I am very wrong.
... Those Catherine Zeta-Jones T-Mobile commercials or the Regis & Kelly TD Bank commercials. You could easily tell that Regis & Kelly were not filmed at the same time as well as Zeta-Jones not being filmed with the T-Mobile reps. I guess we can thank Lucas for this practice that he employed greatly on the prequels. In any case, this does not instill confidence in the quality of the new episodes. Yet, I hope I am very wrong.
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3:56PM on 05/17/2013

so?

i could care less. everyone wanted to come back and i am glad that they found a way to make it happen. oh well, so what? i am so fucking stoked.
i could care less. everyone wanted to come back and i am glad that they found a way to make it happen. oh well, so what? i am so fucking stoked.
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+6
3:55PM on 05/17/2013
Isn't this supposed to be a stepping stone on the way to a movie?
Isn't this supposed to be a stepping stone on the way to a movie?
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6:26PM on 05/18/2013
I could be wrong but I think that was scrapped. I read a couple of years ago that it was originally going to come out very soon after the series was put up on Netflix and I hear nothing of it...
I could be wrong but I think that was scrapped. I read a couple of years ago that it was originally going to come out very soon after the series was put up on Netflix and I hear nothing of it...
3:43PM on 05/17/2013
I'm still too overflowing with anticipation and sheer appreciation that they could even pull this together that I'm not bothered by this at all.
I'm still too overflowing with anticipation and sheer appreciation that they could even pull this together that I'm not bothered by this at all.
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