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Jason Bateman has become one of the most consistently reliable sources for entertainment in recent years. From his comedic turns in films like Horrible Bosses, to his surprisingly affecting dramatic turn in this year’s The Gift, the actor has kept busy in his silver screen endeavors. However, Bateman’s time on the small screen is what started it all. His role as Michael Bluth on the Fox series Arrested Development turned him into a household name – and he will soon make his way back to the medium that made him famous.
According to Deadline, Bateman will make his return to television in the upcoming Ozark. Much like The Gift, Ozark will mark a departure for the typically comedic actor. Set in the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri, centers around world of illegal drug-money laundering. We’re better than a banana stand joke, so we won’t go there. Ozark is currently being shopped around to both digital and premium cable outlets, which at the very least indicates the series will feature feature dark, unflinching content. Aside from starring on the show, Batman will also direct and produce the project – taking a vested interest in the creative processes and direction.
Despite representing a departure for Bateman, transitioning from comedic roles to serious roles has become a simultaneously common and effective practice in Hollywood. Perhaps the best example of such a transition is Bryan Cranston, who shifted from humorous roles in shows such as Malcolm in the Middle and Seinfeld to become a powerhouse Emmy dramatic actor in AMC’s Breaking Bad.
That being said, while Bateman has built his career off comedic movies and TV shows, drama does not seem like a huge shift for him. While he has had his fair share of wacky roles – see: Bad Words – in most of his endeavors, he has traditionally played the “straight” character. This typically would come in the form of a foil against more goofy actors such as Will Arnett or Charlie Day and Jason Bateman. Other comedic projects – such as Juno – started off humorous but ended up featuring some truly profound pathos that the actor was easily able to execute He has an understated, deadpan style of acting that could very easily lend itself to a highly dramatic role such as the one he will undertake in Ozark.
Not much else has come out regarding Bateman’s upcoming project. Ozark goes into production during spring of next year. We will keep you updated with more information as it become available to us. A new season of Arrested Development featuring Bateman will also be coming to Netflix next year as well.