‘Firefly’ spreading wings

Sci Fi snatches up Whedon's canceled Fox show

For a busted TV series that the Fox Network canceled back in December 2002 after only 11 episodes, JossWhedon’s “Firefly” is building up quite a profile in ancillary markets.

The Sci Fi Channel has bought exclusive cable rights to “Firefly” from Twentieth TV for a total license fee of about $450,000 in a deal that includes three episodes Fox never ran.

The cable sale arrives a year after Universal Pictures signed a deal to produce “Serenity,” a theatrical movie version of “Firefly,” to be written and directed by Whedon. (Serenity is the name of the spaceship on the show.) Universal plans to put “Serenity” in theaters in September.

Beginning July 22, Sci Fi will air reruns of “Firefly” in the high-visibility Friday at 7 p.m. timeslot, which leads into the net’s successful block of scripted series: “Stargate SG-1,” “Stargate Atlantis” and “Battlestar Galactica.”

Whedon was co-exec producer of “Firefly” with Tim Minear. Gareth Davies was producer.

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