Firefly means many things to many people. At Comic-Con today, those feelings were given a voice. The Science Channel’s syndication of the show this coming fall resulted in a 10th Anniversary Reunion Panel at the San Diego Convention Center. As of last night around 11pm, there were already a hundred or so attendees rolled up in sleeping bags outside of the closed convention center, waiting in line for a panel that wasn’t scheduled until noon the following day.
Joss Whedon once noted in an interview that his goal isn’t to make things that people like, “Only to make things that they’ll love.” For a show that lasted a paltry 14 episodes, many of which never actually made it on the air, this kind of lasting popularity has no precedent. This isn’t a story that’s been told before, and by the time the feature film Serenity arrived in the summer of 2005, the legions of die-hard fans (Browncoats, for the uninitiated) had done the impossible. Canceled television shows don’t spark large budget feature films. It doesn’t happen. That is… until it did.
In the interest of getting some rest, I was not among those sleeping on the concrete outside the convention center last night. I will admit to not being introduced to Firefly until Serenity’s release, and not having the same fire as the fans who watched their beloved show get unceremoniously kicked to the curb. Those die-hards last night were greeted by a familiar face, as Whedon himself spent over an hour walking the line, signing autographs, and letting the fans know how much he appreciated their support. Even at Comic-Con, this isn’t the norm, and there’s a reason why support for the man and his work has not only lasted, but grown substantially in the intervening years.
This afternoon, a group of journalists were invited to a post-game press conference for the Ballroom 20 panel, and as we waited patiently, all eyes were glued to the nearest phone, absorbing twitter updates from inside the hall and prepping the best questions we could think of. In order to film the panel, I wasn’t able to leave my seat, but just being in the room was reward enough. The entirety of the 10th Anniversary panel will be part of a documentary that will air on the Science channel in November, so even though you might not have been able to make it into the hall and add your screaming voice to the throng, you’ll be able to live vicariously through your television in the near future.
As part of the panel, Whedon was joined by fellow co-exec Tim Minear, as well as the majority of the cast including Nathan Fillion, Sean Maher, Adam Baldwin, Alan Tudyk, and Summer Glau. Some of their eyes were still a little red from the emotional ending of the previous panel, but the afternoon was heavy on the levity and the jokes just kept on coming. Fillion came close to breaking down at one point, but the atmosphere of the press room seemed much more upbeat that what they had all just gone through.
We’ve included our EXCLUSIVE VIDEO COVERAGE of the press conference in three parts below. We hope to be able to update this post with footage from the Ballroom 20 panel, even if it’s just a cell phone video.
FIREFLY 10th Anniversary Press Conference – Part 1
FIREFLY 10th Anniversary Press Conference – Part 2
FIREFLY 10th Anniversary Press Conference – Part 3