Netflix gets 'Arrested Development' stars cheap
The cult hit's online-only revival uses a novel sliding pay scale for the increasingly famous cast.
Abandoned Fox show and cult classic "Arrested Development" makes its return on Netflix (NFLX) on Sunday, but bringing the show back from its untimely death required some creative accounting. Jason Bateman, Will Arnett, Portia de Rossi and Michael Cera were a lot more affordable when "Arrested Development" went off the air in 2006 than after it propelled them to become movie stars and brought them lead roles in TV series and other high-paying career opportunities.
So how did Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and content honcho Ted Sarandos work their financial wizardry? Let The Hollywood Reporter explain how they came up with starring roles for each actor in all 15 episodes and created a sliding pay scale based on the effort involved:
The actor "starring" in the episode is paid $125,000. If he or she appears in more than 90 seconds of an episode (but is not the star), that actor receives $50,000. For less than 90 seconds of airtime in an episode, he or she receives $10,000. Finally, if a clip featuring the actor from a previous episode is used, that actor gets another $1,000. Bateman, for instance, stars in more than one episode.
Got it? So if Tony Hale's Buster has his one remaining hand ripped off by a rabid otter just before being deployed to Afghanistan and spends a whole episode fleshing out the details, he gets $125,000. If David Cross' Tobias Funke blue himself in an episode with a Blue Man Group subplot, he gets $50,000. If Scott Baio's Bob Loblaw makes a cameo as a millionaire after Yahoo (YHOO) buys his law blog, that's $10,000.
"That show launched a lot of our careers and everyone is doing great, so to come back together while things are going well is really a fortunate situation," Bateman told GQ in March. "Everybody had to be big boys about not making it financially impossible."
While it's not the tidiest system for paying actors, it was the only way to make the new episodes happen. That same structure also leaves the door open for a fifth season, depending on how Netflix subscribers react to the retooled Bluths.
"We would love to do more, and we have a deal in place that says that there could be," Netflix's Hastings told The Hollywood Reporter. "They're very in-demand movie and TV stars, and they're all working full time and doing this show in between. They did it for the love of the show and for (creator) Mitch Hurwitz. If we can muster up that love again, we'd love to do it again."
give them a proper Burial.
Copyright © 2013 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.
The good news: Bad weather means fewer drivers on the road, and they're going slower than usual. The bad news: It's still dangerous.
- 8 questions to ask before Mom and Dad move in
- High deductibles fuel new worries of Obamacare sticker shock
- How to use your credit card to donate to charity
- Try this instead of raising the minimum wage
- People left $500,000 in coins at airports last year
- How your driving can affect your credit
- Obamacare projected to cost hundreds of billions less
- November jobs report: Winners and losers
- Student loan debt climbs for 5th year in a row
[BRIEFING.COM] Equity indices have returned to their opening lows as most sectors continue to hover in the red. Defensively-minded groups are exerting pressure on the broader market as consumer staples and health care hold respective losses of 0.6% and 0.2%. On the cyclical side, the largest sector, technology, is lower by 0.2%.
Just reported, October wholesale inventories rose 1.4% while the Briefing.com consensus expected an increase of 0.3%. Today's report follows last month's revised ... More
More Market News
These big 2013 winners delivered a profit windfall, but are due for a 2014 disappointment.