If there’s one thing the Fox network is known for beyond The Simpsons, it’s having the desire and means to completely ignore the finality of canceling a television series. The trend began way back in 2004 with Family Guy—which was dropped in 2002 before robust DVD sales caused the network to reconsider—and has continued with new iterations of 24, Prison Break, and The X-Files.
The broadcast channel is reportedly extending their TV necromancy to another show that may have expired before its time: Firefly, the 2002 Joss Whedon-created series about a motley crew of space jockeys. During a chat at the Television Critics Association gathering in January, David Madden, Fox Broadcasting's president of entertainment, indicated he’d be open to a new season if Whedon was involved.
Whedon had previously taken a noncommittal attitude about Firefly, saying he’d do it only if he was motivated and if the core cast was available for filming. For nearly a decade, that was off the table because of actor Nathan Fillion’s role as the lead on ABC’s Castle, which ended last May. In a Long Beach Comic Con panel with the cast in September 2016, Fillion was ambivalent about the possibility.
"I totally get wanting more," he said. "I hear it all the time … At the same time, we all had what I would call my dream job. It was the perfect position. Everything was great. Even the challenges we faced, we faced them together. We were all in it together and we were all pulling for the same thing, to make a great show. And I loved every minute of it. It's really hard to look at that kind of stuff and say 'Give me more.' Because enough is enough. Oh my god. It was everything. It was everything. How can everything not be enough?"
While Whedon and Fillion mull it over, Fox is in no danger of running out of nostalgic material. The re-launch of Prison Break is scheduled for April; Madden said he was optimistic a new season of The X-Files would premiere in 2018.