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Once More With Feeling

Firefly Producer Utters The Words “Limited Series”

We don’t want to get your hopes up. Things have been said. If you don’t like them, you should probably yell at the person who said them, not us. Thank you. 

You may have spotted a certain something on the cover of the Veronica Mars Entertainment Weekly image we posted yesterday. “What’s next for Firefly?” it said. Coincidentally, EW just posted some possible answers.

The magazine spoke with writer-producer Tim Minear about the chance of more Firefly, though they did preface the interview with this message:

To be clear: There’s no revival currently planned and there are many obstacles to this happening (perhaps first and foremost is that star Nathan Fillion is exclusive to Fox’s rival network ABC for his role on Castle, which is currently in its most-watched season). And last year, the show’s ultra-busy creator Joss Whedon told EW he preferred to focus on building new worlds rather than revisiting old ones.

I think we’ve all been clear for a while more Firefly as we know it isn’t happening but then people go and talk like this.

“I would never foreclose the possibility,” Minear told EW. “The fact that it was even a feature film after it spectacularly failed on Fox was a miracle. And of course it lives on in other forms.”

Of course EW poked a bit more – if it were to happen, how would it happen?

I’m completely talking off the top of my head, but there’s a show that’s been on for the last couple years that’s reinvented the form in terms of the limited series. I’m trying to think of the name of that show — Oh yes! American Horror Story! It doesn’t have to be 13 episodes. Look how Sherlock does it.

I think a limited series of some kind would work best. Something like that could also work if, say, 20th could partner with Netflix, or another distributor. It would have its home on Fox, of course [then a second window on streaming]. A limited series would do very well, I bet.

You can almost hear the hint, hint, nudge, nudge there to Netflix. Though we must end this on a more definitive note so we don’t get anyone too excited, Minear said no one has actually talked to him about continuing the series, adding the last time he and Whedon discussed it in any seriousness was eight years ago.

Previously in Whedony Things

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  • jdhovland

    I would gladly double my monthly payment to Netflix for a few Sherlock-esque seasons of Firefly.

  • Janna

    If Wash is still dead I don’t care. :’(

  • tsee

    I…don’t know how to feel about this. On the one hand, the idea of there being more Firefly fills me with joy and gets me a little choked up. But on the other…as much as the cancellation sucked, it also allowed us to have a series that is kind of perfect in its own little package, you know? Unlike some shows I could mention, Firefly never had the chance to wind on forever and ever ad nauseum until it became a mere husk of what it once was…it’s short and sweet. And part of me kind of wants it to stay that way.

    Can we just have a brand new show, written by Joss and Tim, starring Nathan and Jewel and Alan and Gina and everyone?

  • Bianca Gallegly Horkan

    You can’t have Firefly without Nathan Fillion — and how would he have the time to do Firefly AND Castle? The poor man would never have a day off — ever again.

    As much as I loved Firefly…I’m not sure it’s doable or that I’d watch it without Nathan.

  • Hannele Kormano

    More proof that hope will never die, and it will always be fun to speculate.

  • Morgan

    I’d pretend I’m a purist and say at this point, I’d rather them just leave it, but that would make me a big fat liar. Even if it was a train wreck, I’d watch the shit out of it and defend it to the bitter end. Joss brings that out in me.

  • Adrian

    As a fan, I think it’s beyond time to let it go. FOX screwed up the show’s launch and that was tragic, but the passion that Joss had for the world is a huge part of what touched us as fans, as well as the series’ actors who were then inspired to bring their respective characters to life. Their passion is what made the show so great; now Joss has moved on and the actors have moved on, so I think we should too.

    If Joss and the gang want to come back together and do it again, I will pay money to see it. But I think the Firefly community as a whole needs to make peace and move on. And read the Firefly comics, of course.

  • athenia45

    I’d tuned in to watch something in the Firefly universe.

  • Anastasia Lynn Storer

    I have a love-hate relationship with Firefly. River Tam and Inara (the *characters*, not the actresses, people, since some folks seem to get confused whenever someone criticizes or states a dislike for a character) both make my teeth itch. But I did love most of the other characters, and I did like some of the themes the show was attempting to explore. It might be interesting to see what they’d do now – especially seeing as everyone has aged quite a bit. I’d hope they’d at least “fast forward in time” so the age difference made sense (that might also make it easier for people to handle the absence of Wash).

  • Anonymous

    Oh wow, yes, this is pretty much how I feel about it. As sad as I am that Firefly only soared for a season, I’ve seen too many other good shows overstay their welcome. I also feel as if maybe too much time has passed. The actors have aged well, but unless a similar amount of time has passed in-series, it’s a bit of a jolt. Unless they go animated, which could be interesting and would allow them a lot more freedom in terms of visuals. I have a feeling that wouldn’t be satisfactory to the most ardent of the supporters, though. Ditto if it was about the next gen, starring the kids of the main characters with occasional appearances from the parents.

    What about LEGO Firefly? LOL! I’m kidding, I’m kidding, please don’t impale me.

  • J Ritchey

    That would be the point of a limited series. Keep it small in scale, tight and compact so it can be produced during the same small openings in schedules that make possible things like Joss’ Much Ado About Nothing and the seemingly infinite little geek projects Fillion already participates in. That’s how, despite very active film careers, Cumberbatch and Freeman were able to squeeze in more Sherlock, after all. The contract is a bigger issue than the time.

  • Lady Commentariat

    I do love Firefly, but unless there’s a tight, fantastic story to tell with these characters, I say let it go. Or do an awesome animated series that takes place pre-Serenity.

  • J Ritchey

    I think with enough care, a time conscious continuation would find footing and possibly exceed the original. A Firefly version of the Musketeer Cycle’s Twenty Years After could be incredible.

    As for the show overstaying its welcome, that’s an advantage of limited series. If and when you have the story and support, you make more; if you don’t it goes on the back-burner until you do. This in contrast to the regular series format where a show has to be put out at a set frequency whether the story is there or not. I think its a format that would agree with Firefly immensely.

  • Anonymous

    I read the first comic book (the “continuing story” bit) was was crushed because Wash was still dead. :(

  • Caitlin Lane

    I still just can’t get over the fact that people still seem to think that firefly was just nothing but a complete flop.
    “The fact that it was even a feature film after it spectacularly failed
    on Fox was a miracle.” is really harsh. it “spectacularly failed” because fox screwed it up and aired everything all over the place and out of order. It’s a great series!

  • Lisa Liscoumb

    I would so watch Lego Firefly.

  • Travis

    I’d be happy with a Next Generation sequel series. Set it thirty years after Serenity and have a kid of one of the ship couples be Captain.

  • Charlie

    I rewatched this recently in preparation for reading the comic and it’s even better than I remember.
    Really a missed opportunity in broadcasting history.

  • Todd

    This may be the final words I utter before mysteriously disappearing, but I would love to see Firefly even without any/all of the characters we know.

    There is so much to be explored in this world that I don’t believe is dependent on making something fit into the schedules of the original actors. Honestly, I think I had heard of 3 of them before this series.

    Don’t get me wrong: the occasional cameo when it can be worked in would be AMAZING. But I get sad when I read that possibilities are dim because the original cast is increasingly in demand and difficult to schedule.

  • Vian Lawson

    If Coulson can come back from a thing-through-the-middle injury, why not Wash, I say. It’s still the Whedonverse, right?

  • Rebecca Pahle

    It DID spectacularly fail, though, regardless of the reason. The statement’s not inaccurate.

  • Gary Keyes

    RIP Firefly.

  • Caitlin Lane

    I wasn’t saying it was inaccurate. It’s just harsh. They make it sound like they were surprised it was a feature film because the series was bad. It failed yes, but not because it was a bad series.That’s all I’m saying

  • Anonymous

    As much as I love the crew of Serenity, I think an attempt at recreating that magic that made the ill-fated first season would fail.

    But! This doesn’t mean that any attempts at a show in the “Firefly” world should be left alone. It’s a rich setting with plenty of room for new stories. Something I’d like to see is a mini-series on Persephone with Badger as the lead character.

  • Tallulah Alice Mae

    You know what, since I’m never going to see (and kinda don’t want to see) an actual reboot with all the people back together, since simply the Firefly UNIVERSE is so damn brilliant I wouldn’t mind…starting again? Another series (Sherlock idea excellent), another crew, all set in the ‘verse, with some obligatory shout outs to our crew. Especially since Whedon had all these ideas about Firefly (he had an outline for seven seasons), I want to see more of the cultures and the Blue Sun company and political allegory part of all these stories I’m still gagging to see.

    BUT while we still wait, a head’s up the Dark Horse and Jed Whedon just released another comic book that finally gives us the real story on what happens after the movie – no more fanfic for me to fill that in ahh!

  • Tallulah Alice Mae

    Yes this!

  • Brittany K

    I think it would maybe be cool if they did a Firefly series in the vein of American Horror Story in that ievery season features new characters (perhaps played by the same actors, perhaps not) set in the same world as Firefly. It’s not as if their world isn’t absolutely huge, and like AHS, they wouldn’t all have to be set in the same time period either. I don’t see Firefly every coming back with the same actors it had before, for one thing, they’ve all gotten much older, and several of them have prior commitments. But one thing that sucked about Firefly’s early cancellation was the fact that we didn’t get to see as much of that rich world as we should’ve, and doing a new series like AHS would solve that.

  • Pink Apocalypse

    My rational mind: It’s a perfect story trapped in amber, let it go.

    My feeling heart: NO, YOU!!!!

  • Stealthfire

    Tim Minear has worked on a LOT of cancelled series. Seriously, his Twitter handle is @CancelledAgain. I think he was just coming at this from the perspective of a guy who has had to lose a lot of beloved projects, and was amazed that one of them got brought back in film form.

  • Anonymous

    Bite your tongue. Wash lives!

    I agree with everything else you said, though. :D

  • Anastasia Lynn Storer

    I know – it was a shitty thing for Whedon to do, really, all in an attempt to be shocking and edgy.

  • Anonymous

    They can film during summer hiatus. Age would work well with these characters. It would be a very Whedon-esque thing to do, having them suffering and struggling after years at war with the Alliance.