Browncoats rejoice: Firefly is returning to basic cable — and Nathan Fillion has something to say about it.
The Science Channel has acquired the rights to the cult-hit and will air the series in its short-lived entirety, plus some new extras. Science Channel will wrap each episode with interstitial segments starring renowned physicist Dr. Michio Kaku, who will discuss the theoretical science behind the show’s sci-fi concepts.
According to Firefly studio 20th Century Fox, this will mark the first time Firefly has aired on a fully distributed basic cable channel since 2008, when it ran on USA Network.
In honor of this occasion, star Nathan Fillion took a brief break from shooting ABC’s Castle today to jump on the phone and answer five Firefly questions — including whether he’d ever reprise the role of Captain Mal again. That interview and more details about Science Channel’s Firefly plans below:
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What was the part about playing the character?
NATHAN FILLION: It was my favorite job ever. What wasn’t great about it? I got to wear a low-slung holster. I got to ride horses. I got to have a spaceship. I got to act mean and curmudgeonly. [Creator Joss Whedon] is really good at kicking characters in the nuts so the other characters would have laughs at my expense and that was great too.
If Castle had its series finale tomorrow and Fox said to you and Joss: “We screwed up, let’s try doing Firefly again.” Would you do it?
Yes. Yes. I would examine very closely Fox’s reasoning — I’m a little gun-shy. If I got $300 million from the California Lottery, the first thing I would do is buy the rights to Firefly, make it on my own, and distribute it on the Internet.
What’s the most common thing Firefly fans say to you?
No. 1, “Is there going to be more?” No. 2, “Why was it canceled?”
Why do you think the show has had such an enduring appeal?
It’s a great question. We’re the most story-literate society the world has ever seen. What Joss tends to do is twist story conventions into reality. Whereas the story goes like this, real life goes like this, and that’s what Joss has mastered.
Do you ever watch the show nowadays or is that just weird?
It’s not weird. I haven’t watched it in a long, long time and I would like to revisit it.
Firefly premieres on Science Channel on March 6 at 8 p.m., with the two hour pilot, followed by the first episode at 10 p.m. Following that, Firefly episodes will air every Sunday — and, yes, in their original intended order and upgraded to high definition.