Gold-mettle finish?

Fox slates 'Arrested' finale vs. Olympics

“Arrested Development” will wrap its third — and likely last — season on Fox next month with a two-hour swan song slated to air opposite the Opening Ceremony of the Winter Olympics.

Fox has decided to package four episodes of “Arrested” and air them as a two-hour season finale from 8-10 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 10, replacing the net’s usual lineup of “Malcolm in the Middle,” “Bernie Mac” and “Trading Spouses.”

Justine Bateman and Judge Reinhold have filmed guest shots for the finale, with the former playing Nellie Bluth, the long-lost sister of Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman).

While Fox’s “Idol”-packed winter and spring schedule makes the Friday airdate something less than shocking, scheduling the broadcast opposite the first night of the Olympics sends another strong signal that the net has given up any hope of reviving the show. Late last year, Fox decided to reduce the “Arrested” third-season episode order to 13.

Both ABC and Showtime have offered to pick up “Arrested” from producers 20th Century Fox TV and Imagine Television (Daily Variety, Dec. 14).

After an initial flurry of talks, conversations have apparently cooled as “Arrested” creator Mitch Hurwitz wraps post-production on the final four episodes of the season.

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