There’s whispers among Browncoats of a Firefly revival, thanks to Nathan Fillion’s comment that he would go back in a heartbeat if he won $300 million in the lottery. Whispers of buying the rights to the show, giving them to Joss & co, and getting the gang back together. Not so much whispers as a roar. But a cautious roar. A roar we’re trying to share with talk show hosts and each other as much as possible.
I was up late last night–about three hours after I decided to go to sleep–thinking about realistic ways to make this happen. I started making a list of potential problems (I thought of them as roadblocks in my head) and helpful things already in place.
Without further ado, here’s both lists now:
- First and foremost, buying the rights. Fox isn’t going to want to part with them, even though they’re not using them. Irksome and annoying, but truth. I’m betting it’s going to take $70 million or more to get them to part with it.
- Sets. The Firefly sets were dismantled in 2003. The chances of finding a place where new episodes can be shot that will look similar to the originals is slim to none. Possible plus to counter this: there may be fans in the LA area who have decorated their houses/businesses/buildings so that they closely resemble Serenity…and if they are such big fans as that, they probably won’t mind allowing the cast and crew shooting there either.
- Castle, Chuck, The Cape, and V. Nathan, Adam, Summer, and Morena have their hands tied at the moment. I can’t speak for Adam, Summer, or Morena’s schedules, but I know for a fact that Nathan is often working 18 hour days on Castle. There is NO WAY that this campaign is about getting them to quit their other jobs. If this Firefly revival goes through, it has to be in such a way that they can keep their other jobs. (See my cunning plan…) Possible sad sad sad plus: The Cape is listed as certain to be cancelled, V is listed as more likely to be cancelled than renewed, and Chuck is listed as a toss-up between cancellation and renewal on TVbytheNumbers, so one, two, or all three of them may be more available next year. Unfortunately, this sucks for them–and for fans of Chuck, The Cape, and V–so we obviously wish that both shows will get renewed for many seasons to come!
- Jane Espenson and Jose Molina have already explicitly stated that they support the idea of more live-action Firefly and would be on board with it.
- Almost every cast member has explicitly stated that they would go back if they could. I’ve never heard or read anything to contradict that.
- There are currently over 99,000 fans on the “Help Nathan Buy Firefly” page. That’s a LOT of people willing to give of their money, time, and selves (meaning labor–some have offered to help out on set if it gets that far) for this cause.
- eta: Patrick Rothfuss (an awesome author, in case you were wondering. He’s done some AWESOME things before, but this is probably moving him to the top of my “favourite author list”!) has pledged to help Nathan buy Firefly with his royalties from his new book that is coming out soon. Obviously this offer only holds if Nathan truly was serious, but this still deserves a spot on the list of positives!!!
So those are my lists so far. After I made those lists, I started to plan. Nothing major, just some ideas in my head.
My cunning plan:
- First, find out how much people are willing to give. Not just a post on Facebook, either. A legitimate place where people can go to make a pledge. For this purpose, we need a site we can use FOR FREE to accept these pledges.
I’m thinking SurveyMonkey.com.Something like this. That’s just a rough survey I made in like ten minutes, but that would be a great way to get an actual estimate without using a site like Paypal, which takes money up front for something that might not happen.[ETA: the pledge site is up here: http://helpnathanbuyfirefly.com/pledge/]
- Wait until there are at least $30 million in pledges. This is an almost impossible goal, but once we get there, the next steps get easier.
- Next, approach Fox professionally with an official offer.We’ll need to hire a lawyer (or maybe get the help of a Browncoat lawyer) to make our offer more official and make sure that everything is aboveboard and legally respectable.
- Next, if Fox accepts our offer, we find a way to get hard money. Paypal was my first thought… any other ideas?
- Next, we give Fox the money and give the rights to Joss. Just like that. The lawyer would be very helpful here as well…especially since, up to that point, Firefly would have 70,000 official owners!!! Fans who pledged and delivered more than $10,000 get credited as producers and the right to work on the show if they are available, but it is important that the rights go to Joss. I know that here is where my plan stops being relevant, but it keeps going…
- Next, Joss gathers a gang of writers together (especially Jose Molina and Jane Espenson!), and they write 13 more kick-butt episodes (for now)! Writers are compensated at the industry standard rate for their writing.
- Next, we wait for Castle, V, and Chuck to go on hiatus simultaneously. This will probably happen over the summer. Each episode has to be shot in 6 days (like Dr. Horrible!) with minimal crew and professional-level equipment. The crew and actors MUST be paid at industry standard. This may be a fan-funded reboot, but it is very important that everyone gets paid up front for this! There may only be time to shoot 3-6 episodes this summer. That’s fine… with something like this, you take what you get.
- Once the episodes are cut, release them on Youtube. This will make them free and available to everyone all over the world–especially the fans who funded the project! Youtube is free, so this is another way to save money.
- Sell the Season 2 DVDs to finance season 3. (There should be plenty of extras to make it worth the $50 they will cost.) If there is enough DVD sales, there will be enough money there for a season 3. If not, we at least got our second season, and we certainly will have had a grand adventure whilst doing so!
So there you have it… there’s my lists. I hope it has given you something to think about. Hopefully, I will be able to sleep tonight now that I’ve gotten this all written down!