Easily the biggest story of the last week, and one of the biggest of the year, is Disney's purchase of Fox. The Mouse House recently finalized their purchase of most of 21st Century Fox's assets in a $52 billion deal. That includes every franchise Fox owns, be it on the big screen or the small screen. That means Disney is now in control of Firefly. Not to get too ahead of ourselves, but it's possible that Disney could do a Firefly reboot in the future, should they choose to do so.
There are a lot of moving pieces involved in this Disney/Fox merger, and many were focused on the fact that the X-Men, Fantastic Four and Deadpool are all back with Marvel Studios now. Or, at least they will be once the deal is approved by antitrust regulators, which could take anywhere between 12 and 18 months. In any case, at that point, Disney will be in control of Firefly and that could be our best chance at a reboot of some kind. Disney CEO Bob Iger recently said that they will "look carefully" at Fox's franchises to see what will work for their brand.
"Basically Fox, 20th Century Fox Studios, has some interesting tentpole opportunities, we obviously are going to continue to support that. What they've done obviously with Avatar, and what they did with Deadpool, X-Men, Fantastic Four, Planet of the Apes is another one. We'll stay in that business. Not all of it will be branded anything other than what it's branded today, as a for instance. How much we will create under that banner, we're still uncertain. It's going to take a while from a regulatory perspective. They'll continue to develop in that period of time and at such time as we close this deal and have control, we'll take stock and really look carefully at what their slate looks like going forward and how many movies it would make sense to make."
Firefly, should it be rebooted, would more than likely take place on the small screen. Given that Disney is planning on launching their own streaming service in 2019, they're going to need content in order to attract subscribers. A new season of Firefly would absolutely accomplish that. Though, Joss Whedon would likely have to be on board to make it happen. David Madden, Broadcasting President of Entertainment at Fox, indicated earlier this year that a reboot would be possible, with Whedon on board, in an interview with Rotten Tomatoes.
"Given the success of Fox's reboots of The X-Files and 24, and Prison Break returning this year, Madden said he'd be open to a Firefly reboot if Joss Whedon himself wanted to revisit it. Madden suspects Whedon is now too busy with movies, and he would not consider doing Firefly without Whedon."
Now, things will change under Disney's control. They have a good relationship with Joss Whedon, given his work on The Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron. He's since left the MCU, but if Disney actually wanted to get Firefly going again? That might be enough to get Whedon back. As for the cast? Everyone seems to be busy these days, but if anyone could make this happen, it's Disney. And, as pointed out by Geek Tyrant, the long-desired Firefly reboot will be possible once Disney officially owns the rights. Don't get your hopes up too high, but Disney likes money and there's money to be made here.