Arrested DevelopmentLatest News and Opinion
Posted Friday 5/25/18 at 7:45PM EDT
Jason Bateman's use of "family" shows how to the word is used to paper over serious problems
"A television set is not a family," Anne Helen Petersen says of The New York Times sitdown with the Arrested Development cast that stirred controversy this week, particularly over Bateman excusing co-star Jessica Walter's experience with verbal abuse from Jeffrey Tambor. “This is a family and families, you know, have love, laughter, arguments — again, not to belittle it, but a lot of stuff happens in 15 years," Bateman said. As Petersen explains, the word "family" may sound innocuous, but it could have a darker meaning. "In cases like these, invoking 'the family' of the workplace becomes a means of blunting anger, of sublimating resistance," she says. "If you push back, it suggests, you’re not harming a company that benefits from your labor. You’re harming your family. The guilt — the natural responsibility we feel toward family members — is generally sufficient to keep workers in line and resigned to their new fate, whether it means the loss of wages or pension, an increase in hours, or the removal of mechanisms like tenure meant to ensure job stability. Speaking up for yourself? Hurting the family. To call a workplace a family is to elevate the loyalty one should feel to the idea of the company and its members and simultaneously excuse, or flatten, any bad behavior or damage inflicted within its confines."
Posted Thursday 5/24/18 at 7:14PM EDT
David Cross apologizes to Jessica Walter, brings up her yelling at somebody on set while also offering details on Jeffrey Tambor's outburst
In a lengthy interview today with Gothamist, Cross recalled how his wife, actress Amber Tamblyn, urged him to avoid Twitter last night following the furor yesterday over The New York Times sitdown with the Arrested Development cast. "I will unequivocally apologize to Jessica," he said of his behavior during the interview. "I'm sorry that we behaved the way we behaved. Whatever the criticisms are, I will own up." But Cross also brought up that Walter had her own outburst on set, one that wasn't as bad as Tambor's outburst. "But to Jessica's credit, she felt bad, she apologized," he said. "Portia (di Rossi) wasn't around, so there was a stand-in for her for months and months and months, and there was this incident, but it didn't have the same kind of feeling that Jeffrey's did. Jeffrey's took a lot of the focus. And again, I don't condone that behavior when anybody does it. And that's with crewmembers as well. There's just no excuse." He also offered some detail of Tambor's outburst: "It was shocking, uncomfortable," he said. "Nobody felt good about it. Nobody was gleeful about it. And it's really unfortunate that it did happen. Outside of the extreme nature of the yelling and dressing down in front of the rest of the cast and crew, I think everyone else as well understood the frustration." Cross added that Tambor "made a big mea culpa to the cast and the crew, but the damage was done. Again, that didn't come out of nowhere, he's not American Psycho or whatever. I think Jason (Bateman) pointed this out, but we didn't know about the Transparent stuff, I hadn't seen that behavior ever from him in 15 years. I have now. And that goes into the pile of what I know about Jeffrey. But up until that point I'd never seen that." Finally, Cross was asked if this controversy will affect how Season 5 is received. "Oh yes, without a doubt. At least initially," he said. ALSO: Netflix cancels Arrested Development cast's British press tour amid Tambor backlash.
Posted Thursday 5/24/18 at 2:03PM EDT
Has Jeffrey Tambor's abusive behavior tainted his work?
In an essay on "The Cultural Vandalism of Jeffrey Tambor," Matt Zoller Seitz writes that now that his abusive behavior on Transparent and Arrested Development have come out, Tambor has "lost the power of illusion — the illusions he created with such painstaking care — and all you can see now are allegations that seem a lot more convincing than his vague apologies and promises to do better." Seitz writes that Tambor's "performance as Hank Kingsley, the sidekick on The Larry Sanders Show, was one of the great portraits of showbiz narcissism, but I can’t imagine revisiting it with the same eyes now, especially during the season where Hank’s assistant, played by Scott Thompson, sues his boss for making homophobic jokes and contributing to a culture of harassment. I can’t lose myself in the fiction anymore because I don’t see the character he’s playing — not exclusively. I see the character for a few seconds or minutes at a time, and then the façade drops and I see the accused sexual harasser and verbal abuser who was fired from his award-winning lead role on Transparent, and who, according to (Jessica) Walter, verbally abused her on the set of Arrested Development. This sort of thing seems categorically different from, say, watching a film starring an actor whose political beliefs are different from yours (though there, too, a line could be irrevocably crossed). Once you believe that a particular actor or filmmaker or screenwriter is a predator or abuser, you’re aware that the environment that produced your entertainment — the film set — was engaged in a conscious or reflexive cover-up, in the name of protecting an investment."
- Jason Bateman showed how Hollywood has justified bad behavior for generations: "Bateman defaulted to every entrenched cultural script of minimizing fault," says David Sims, "downplaying misbehavior, and largely attributing Tambor’s verbal harassment to the unique, circumstantial pressures of acting—a process, he suggested, most onlookers could not hope to understand."
- The interview resonated because "the disrespect felt so benign in the delivery and so destructive in the effect": "How can you have 'zero complaints' about a workplace someone else remembers as containing the worst verbal abuse of her career?" says Linda Holmes. "Is that not, itself, a complaint? Why is it important that over and above forgiveness, Tambor receives absolution from the utterly unaffected men in the cast, right in front of the woman who initially told the Hollywood Reporter she didn't even want to talk about her history with him in the first place? Tambor brought all this up, put all of it out in public, just so everyone else could explain why it didn't matter? Is this reverse roast, this closing argument by a self-appointed defense attorney — is this supposed to be his reckoning?"
- Tony Hale joins Bateman in apologizing to Jessica Walter for his behavior in New York Times interview
- Bateman's apology was "actually good" and "oddly refreshing" -- a stark contrast to Louis CK's apology
- Life in Pieces star Thomas Sadowski slams Arrested men for what they did to Walter: "What in the halfpenny f*ck is happening?!"
- New York Times reporter Sopan Deb: "When I asked about Jeffrey Tambor, obviously the room's tone changed quite a bit"
Posted Thursday 5/24/18 at 4:10AM EDT
Arrested Development men accused of gaslighting Jessica Walter to defend Jeffrey Tambor
The New York Times sitdown with the Netflix cast was notable for the great lengths the men went to defend Tambor after Walter called him out for once verbally abusing her on set. "Jessica Walter actually cries in this interview about how terrible Jeffrey Tambor was to her and her male co-stars go to extraordinary lengths to comfort and defend...Tambor. FFS," tweeted New York Magazine writer Marin Cogan. Much of the online ire was for Jason Bateman, who offered a defense of Tambor's behavior that no one pushed back against, except for Alia Shawkat, the only other female cast member in attendance. "This is a family and families, you know, have love, laughter, arguments — again, not to belittle it, but a lot of stuff happens in 15 years," Bateman said. To which Vulture writer Kathryn VanArendonk tweeted:"'Families get messy' is the most emotionally manipulative, undermining rhetorical move. For one, that sh*t would still be gutting and difficult and confidence-shaking if they were a family! But more importantly: they are NOT. 'We're a family' is an attempt to excuse Tambor and Bateman, but it's also a gesture that excuses (creator Mitch) Hurwitz and Netflix from taking any action to remedy the situation. Corporations are not your family."
UPDATE: Jason Bateman apologizes in a series of tweets: "Based on listening to the NYT interview and hearing people’s thoughts online, I realize that I was wrong. I sound like I’m condoning yelling at work. I do not. It sounds like I’m excusing Jeffery. I do not. It sounds like I’m insensitive to Jessica. I am not. In fact, I’m horrified that I wasn’t more aware of how this incident affected her...I’m incredibly embarrassed and deeply sorry to have done that to Jessica. This is a big learning moment for me. I shouldn’t have tried so hard to mansplain, or fix a fight, or make everything okay. I should’ve focused more on what the most important part of it all is — there’s never any excuse for abuse, in any form, from any gender. And, the victim’s voice needs to be heard and respected. Period...I didn’t say that and instead said a bunch of other stuff and not very well. I deeply, and sincerely, apologize.”
Posted Wednesday 5/23/18 at 7:10PM EDT
A teary Jessica Walter discusses Jeffrey Tambor's verbal harassment on Arrested Development set
Tambor admitted earlier this month that he'd had a "blowup" with Walters for which he later "profusely apologized." Today, in a New York Times sitdown with the Netflix series cast, including Tambor, Walter addressed Tambor's verbal abuse. "Let me just say one thing that I just realized in this conversation," she said. "I have to let go of being angry at him. He never crossed the line on our show, with any, you know, sexual whatever. Verbally, yes, he harassed me, but he did apologize. I have to let it go." She then turned to Tambor and said, "And I have to give you a chance to, you know, for us to be friends again." For which Tambor responded: "Absolutely." Walter added: "But it’s hard because honestly — Jason (Bateman) says this happens all the time. In like almost 60 years of working, I’ve never had anybody yell at me like that on a set. And it’s hard to deal with, but I’m over it now. I just let it go right here, for The New York Times." Meanwhile, Jason Bateman has been slammed on Twitter for saying in the interview that Walter's experience wasn't that unusual, that there was a lot of yelling on set. "Again, not to belittle it or excuse it or anything, but in the entertainment industry it is incredibly common to have people who are, in quotes, ‘difficult,’” he said. ALSO: Jason Bateman tells Tambor he won't do another Arrested season without him.
Posted Wednesday 5/23/18 at 2:17PM EDT
Netflix puts Jeffrey Tambor back in the Emmy race, submitting him for Arrested Development
Season 5 of Arrested Development launches on May 29, just before the Emmy cutoff of May 31. Amazon previously declined to submit Tambor for his work on Transparent following his sexual misconduct firing.
Posted Tuesday 5/22/18 at 1:13PM EDT
Arrested Development's fifth season is great, but the Jeffrey Tambor Transparent jokes seem in poor taste
There are a lot of meta allusions to Tambor's work on his Amazon series, which don't work in the aftermath of his sexual harassment scandal.
Posted Tuesday 5/22/18 at 6:12AM EDT
Jason Bateman and Will Arnett are okay after their taxi hit a car while promoting Arrested Development in New York City
Bateman and Arnett were in a van that rear-ended another car on Monday evening. The cast of the Netflix series spent Monday promoting Season 5.
Posted Monday 5/21/18 at 6:27PM EDT
Jeffrey Tambor: I apologized to my Arrested Development co-stars over "distraction" of Transparent sexual harassment scandal
“I sent an email around and said an apology to these people I love so much for the distraction, and you’ll be asked questions, and things like that," Tambor said in an interview Monday with EW radio. "I gave a rather in-depth interview to The Hollywood Reporter. I’m no longer playing Maura, I’m going to miss her very much, I’m going to miss that cast that I love so much, and I wish them all the best. But I’m here now as a fan of this wonderful, wonderful group. I’m a little nervous, but I am so excited about this — and such a fan of these people — it is our best season, and these actors just knock it out of the park.”
Posted Friday 5/18/18 at 1:36PM EDT
Jeffrey Tambor made his post-sexual harassment scandal return to the red carpet to promote Arrested Development
“It feels great,” he told Entertainment Tonight, adding: “I'm excited to be here.”
Posted Thursday 5/17/18 at 10:42PM EDT
Arrested Development creator: We couldn't cut Jeffrey Tambor out of Season 5 because "there would be no show"
The news that Tambor was being investigated for sexual harassment on the Transparent set broke on Nov. 8. Mitch Hurwitz wrapped filming on Season 5 at the end of November, and says Tambor was "as surprised by it as I was" by the allegations. Hurwitz says he checked with Arrested's cast and crew, as well as Netflix and studio 20th Century Fox, to see if Tambor had been the subject of any sexual misconduct complaints. Tambor wasn't fired from the Amazon series until Feb. 15. So given the information Hurwitz had at the time, he said he proceeded with Tambor on the show. “We were done shooting — there was no version of cutting him out of the show, or there would be no show,” Hurwitz explains, adding: “Am I going to cut Jeffrey out of the show, based on allegations that he disputes, that Amazon hasn’t shared, and that we have never experienced any complaints about? No, of course I am not going to…. I’m going to support Jeffrey.”
Posted Thursday 5/17/18 at 10:42PM EDT
Dermot Mulroney to form a "special bond" with Lucille Bluth on Arrested Development
Creator Mitch Hurwiz says Mulroney will play a "guileless" lawyer-turned-surfer named Dusty. “He has a relationship of sorts with Lucille,” he says.
Posted Thursday 5/17/18 at 9:56AM EDT
Arrested Development cast to get a pay bump for remixed Season 4 episodes
Producer 20th Century Fox will compensate the actors for seven episodes. The remix expanded Season 4 from 15 to 22 episodes.
Posted Wednesday 5/16/18 at 5:46PM EDT
Portia de Rossi says she's done with acting after Arrested Development Season 5
The actress tells wife Ellen DeGeneres she actually decided to quit acting 18 months ago after Shonda Rhimes wrote her off Scandal. But Arrested Development creator Mitch Hurwitz convinced her to do Season 5 of the Netflix series. “I called Mitch Hurwitz, who’s the creator of Arrested Development and I said, ‘If there is a season 5, I won’t be doing it because I quit acting. And he seemed really understanding and he totally got it," de Rossi recalls. "We had a great conversation, and then he wrote me into five episodes. Don’t know how it happened, but yes, I am on Season 5.” Ellen says de Rossi is quitting acting because she didn't like doing press and talk show interviews. De Rossi, who turned 45 in January, adds: “I was approaching 45 and I just kind of … was wondering is there something that I could tackle now that I’ve never done before that would be really challenging and different. I kind of knew what acting would look like for me for the next 10, 20 years, so I decided to quit and start a business."
Posted Wednesday 5/16/18 at 5:46PM EDT
Netflix will split Arrested Development Season 5 in half
Eight episodes of the 16-episode fifth season will arrive on May 29. The other eight episodes will debut later this year.