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June 01 2011

Netflix CEO acknowledges Firefly's popularity with streamers. But according to The Hollywood Reporter, Reed Hasting said that it would be impractical to create new episodes, given the actors have aged and the sets no longer exist.

Nice, that the show is popular and such a question was asked.
I understand his argument, that it is impractical, but for other reasons. I don't see the aging-thing as a problem. They can pick up 5 years later and there is no never-aging vampire around.
Maybe it's a demographic thing? An older cast won't pull in a younger audience?
This cracks me up. The show that just won't go away. :)
Would they need to pull in a younger audience though?

If this talk was about getting the show back on television with new episodes, then I'd see the importance of wanting to pull in a younger audience, but if it'd be something just fox Netflix or other streaming platforms, I don't see why it would matter that much. I mean, whoever is finding the show now - almost 10 years later - and whoever is still re-watching it on Netflix, I hardly think they wouldn't watch new episodes because the cast is aged.

The sets and just production budget as a whole is the key thing, I think.

With that said, this is just another cruel way to tease us about something we won't get.
Maybe Joss should do something with Netflix. Not necessarily related to Firefly, perhaps, but it beats trying networks again.
Would they need to pull in a younger audience though?


Doesn't everyone want a younger audience these days? Just a theory, I was thinking there might be some deeper meaning than just the cast look a bit old. Setting a show 5-10 years after the events of Serenity isn't that much a stretch I would have thought.
Excuses, excuses, age doesn't matter to the viewing audience as much as people try to make us think. It's content that matters and many popular shows have proven that
The usual target demographic is younger, because the advertisers are interested in the 18-49 demographic. The TV ratings in that demographic are important. But Netflix needs viewrs, no matter the age, because it is not about advertisers and commercials.
At least, I think, it is like that.
I doubt they could get all the cast together again. Nathan has his own show. Morena is also working on various things. I'm not up to speed on the rest, but I've heard of projects for them as well. Unless they try to do in the break between seasons, I don't see this happening.

As for sets: they've rebuild Serenity before. It can be done.

As for aging actors... whatever. This is not a teeny show... well actually Hollywood still doesn't cast teenagers to play teenagers, so even then it wouldn't matter. All the women are still hot as hell. Some of the men are too. I see no reason to let aging of the cast stop a reunion of Firefly. Not even if they were all 60.
As for sets: they've rebuild Serenity before. It can be done.

Sets like that are expensive.
I agree that it's not the actors' age, but the cost of the set is probably the thing that is keeping them from doing it. That and the fact that most of the writers and actors are committed to doing other shows now. I mean we all overlook actors aging in vampire shows so I can't imagine the Firefly cast aging being that big of problem when they are playing characters actually do age.
Really? Age is a problem? Then how did the Golden Girls stay on the air for nearly 8 years? Excuses, excuses.
Not going to happen. Ever. Stop torturing yourselves. Can't wait for all the new stuff to fall in love with this summer and next fall. Always something potentially wonderful right around the corner!
@madmolly
I was actually thinking the same thing, but just thought I'd get funny looks if I mentioned Golden Girls, not to mention how popular Betty White has been of late
If Summer Glau is unavailable then cast Betty White.
She has the 'tude.
Proof
I actually have an entire master plan for 10th anniversary Firefly world domination. But as I am not King of Hollywood, I can't make it happen.
I don't understand why aging matters. They aren't vampires. And as for sets, Firefly has multiple worlds that don't all look the same. The only set which would be hard to re-create is the ship but they already did it once.
Not going to happen. Ever. Stop torturing yourselves.

Torture to you, maybe. Some of us actually enjoy* this kind of speculation.


* Masochism rulez!

[ edited by brinderwalt on 2011-06-01 21:08 ]
zz9 I think I love you.
The only set which would be hard to re-create is the ship but they already did it once.

As stated, sets like that are expensive. Does anyone remember how FOX forewent a traditional pilot process for Dollhouse in order to spend that money on a similarly-expensive and elaborate set? These aren't plywood.
every time firefly is discussed for revival i die a little inside..
every time firefly is discussed for revival i die a little inside..


I hear ya, pk fire.

The age thing kind of boggles me since all those actors are quite busy in their careers outside of Firefly and moving the timeline forward a few years can't be that big an issue. The money thing, though is the real issue. Still, one can dream.
This just in: helpreedhastingbuildanewserenityset.com is available! HERE WE GO!

ETA: Oh, for pity's sake, they're actually trying to do it.

[ edited by Tin Ear Tom on 2011-06-01 23:22 ]
I would watch the adventures of our crew in the Serenity Valley Nursing Home, for cripes' sake!

If the desired "prime demographic" gets any younger, it'll be All Barney, All the Time.
The desired demo hasn't changed in years. Not many 18-49 year olds watch Barney (by choice). Doubt that will ever change.

Also, the prime advertiser demographic has absolutely no impact on and is of no concern to Netflix. It only matters to ad supported television which Netflix decidedly is not.
In before "help Netflix build Serenity set" fan campaigning. (Edit: apparently I should read all the comments before posting an "in before" comment myself).

Also, why does everyone always assume Firefly would have to come back fully formed? I look at Star Trek, where they created an entirely new series in the same universe, and had actors from the original guest star occasionally. Joss created a rich verse, it would be ashame to limit it to one short-lived series and movie. Get around actor commitments by letting them do special guest spots, but follow a mostly new crew around the verse! It could work.

Glad to hear Firefly is doing well on Netflix, and I hope that they continue to develop original content.

[ edited by AnotherFireflyfan on 2011-06-01 23:00 ]
But as I am not King of Hollywood, I can't make it happen.

I'd vote for you, King b!X, first of his name.
The set, once built, wouldn't need any alteration or "updating"; It's a static piece. Come to think of it, there have been so many CGI advances and such, that production costs could conceivably be lower for a Remake or Continuation.

The "Cast Aging" issue holds little merit, and I personally find age-bias to be offensive (Yes, I'm over 50). If they're reluctant to go with the original concept, they can do like "Browncoats: Redemption" and show another aspect of Joss' 'Verse.

Ask him, NetFlix; I bet he'll at least talk to you about it.
V used CGI sets. They were positively awful.
I would watch the adventures of our crew in the Serenity Valley Nursing Home, for cripes' sake!

Oo... It could be like Bubba Hotep IN SPACE.
The cast isn't the only thing that's aged -- but each and every one of us has gotten HOTTER! Dayum.
While I would definitely watch another show set in the 'verse, I think that one of Firefly's main draws was that it's characters and the actors that portrayed them all worked so perfectly. They came right out of the gate as deep, three dimensional people. That's not something you see often in a television show. I can really sympathize with Joss and co. on their heartbreak at losing this show ; they had won the lottery, only to have it all taken away.
Here's an interesting snippet that didn't get reported in the THR article.

According to Hastings, the most internet video is now paid for in the US, of course this is mostly due to services like Netflix offering services that people want at affordable rates. He also mentioned that Neflix has enabled content owners to make money off of shows that previously weren’t monetized i.e. Joss Whedon’s Firefly. Due to it being unavailable through any other legal mean prior to its debut on Netflix, Fox is now finally getting paid for it.

Firefly was available on DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu and iTunes. How exactly was it not available by any other legal means? It was available in EVERY other legal means. Whatever.

[ edited by IrrationaliTV on 2011-06-02 08:07 ]
That's a flabbergastingly perplexing thing for him to have said.
I think everyone is missing the big picture here. We'll soon have Firefly: The Next Generation, followed by Firefly: Deep Space Nine, Firefly: Voyager, and finally Firefly: Enterprise...of course the last one won't be as loved by most fans.

But there you go, problem solved. New sets, new cast. It's a go!
Tim Minear said:

The cast isn't the only thing that's aged -- but each and every one of us has gotten HOTTER! Dayum.


Those are called Hot Flashes, Tim. Consult your Doctor (neither Horrible nor Tam). But don't worry, I'm told it's perfectly natural. :)
The first rule of bringing back Firefly: don't talk about bringing back Firefly.
Tim - agree fully!

To the larger point: I would pay money today to see another show set in the Verse. Same canon, same continuity, same people who are dead still being dead. But you could still have members of the "older" Firefly crew make an appearance. (Or several.)

I have lots of ideas. Sharing any of them means they probably can't happen (damn those lawyers). But making a Deep Space 9-style show set in the Verse isn't specific enough to not happen as a result of me saying it. I think.

(I hope.)
For those who love figures here is a source that states Firefly - The Complete Series Blu-ray was in the top ten of sales a couple of weeks ago. Just thought people might like to see how well it's still doing. Wish there were total figures online somewhere for all the DVD's etc. Joss' works have sold. Would love to see what they were.
I've always thought that a Firefly-verse based series could be a really good option for a Netflix-like online "tv" network that produces original content. It's a known franchise with a built in audience. Even though the audience is relatively small, they are devoted, and I think a lot of them would be willing to pay a subscription to see more episodes or a new series in that verse.

If I ever strike it rich, I'd want to create this network - we could save cancelled shows and commission quality original series from talented creators (Joss, JMS, Bryan Fuller, Tim Minear, etc), create entertainment where the writers have a level of creative freedom and control not normally allowed on tv, and get subscriptions. Subscribers would then get a substantial discount on the dvd/blu-ray sets after a season gets produced. I know it's a lot more complicated than all that, and the budget of a tv series would be a challenge, but I'm sure somewhere in there is a model that could become profitable. Plus it would be geared towards creating art, rather than mass entertainment, and filling niches that are ignored on mainstream tv but have small but loyal (willing to pay) audiences.
"actors have aged" and "sets have been dismantled" really sounds to me like "we just don't want to do it". Or maybe "we can't really afford to do that right now." Besides, it doesn't count unless Joss and Tim are involved (and Ben Edlund, for that matter!)

That said, in an ideal world, that would be a GREAT use of Firefly. And maybe bring back Pushing Daisies while we're at it!
*slaps forehead* -Of Course! We've all been missing the answer to all of Mr Hastings' objections. Four little words:

SERENITY: The Animated Series !

Aging Actors would be a non-factor when it comes to voice work. I think all our BDHs have done voice projects, and could do other projects without interrupting a shooting schedule.

Expensive Sets? No problem! Good animation can provide SFX that would be impossible on a live action budget.

An Animated Series would appeal to the 18-49 Demographic, and atrract (IMO) a wider audience than NetFlix ever dreamed of.

Joss has on hand some of the best writers in the Business, so if Mr Hastings is really interested in reviving the 'Verse, he certainly could.
Animated? Hmm, well, as long as we're all dreaming...can we have Shinichiro Watanabe (Cowboy Bebpop, Samurai Champloo) direct it? Pretty please? He's great with mixing genres and combining humor and drama and action.
every time firefly is discussed for revival i die a little inside..

I must be a lifeforce demon 'cause it just makes me feel more alive...
The only way any type of 'verse will come back in any media is if there is a strong passionate and powerful internal champion that pushes for it. Fans wanting it means nothing. Just buzzing flies. I don't mean that in an insulting way, just stating it like it is.

Serenity would have never happened without Mary Parent. Someone else at another studio has to have that same passion to work with Joss and Joss has to have that burning passion to do Firefly again over all else.

I call its chances 1 in a very large number in any form unless a true fan becomes very powerful in the industry very quickly. I'm also ok with that.
Well, after Joss is hugely successful with Avengers, wouldn't it be more likely that a studio would want to do Serenity 2? (even if more likely is just one in a somewhat-less-large-but-still-very-large number?)

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