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Last Updated: Saturday, 12 November 2005, 15:06 GMT
Fox TV drops Development sitcom
Jason Bateman
Jason Bateman plays lead character Michael Bluth
Cult comedy Arrested Development has been pulled from the schedules of US TV network Fox after low ratings.

The show, which airs in the UK on BBC Two, won an Emmy for best comedy last summer, but has struggled for viewers.

Fox's move takes place during the "sweeps", when networks go all out to boost ratings to determine how much they can sell advertising time for.

The show's third series has been cut from 22 to 13 episodes. A Fox spokesman said its future had not been decided.

He added the show would return in December. It has been replaced by repeats of popular drama Prison Break.

The series, made by 20th Century Fox, stars Jason Batemen as a widower struggling to deal with his dysfunctional family after his father, played by Jeffrey Tabor, is sent to prison.

But despite its critical success, its US ratings have averaged only 4.2 million viewers this series.

A 20th Century Fox spokesman said: "There was a very loyal and passionate audience that unfortunately never did grow."

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