11:08 update: Look at the end of this entry: KUFO's "Fatboy" Roberts sheds what light he can.
Well, this sucks: Fox has for all intents and purposes halted the increasingly popular public screenings of all of its shows, including everything Joss Whedon made for them: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the special Buffy sing-along, the Angel screening series the Mission Theater was just about to start (as Angel and Buffy were Fox productions for other networks), and any future Firefly screenings like we did in Portland this summer.
(This also stops the Mission's Arrested Development Wednesday night screening series, if that was not yet finished.)
I'd been hearing rumblings of this the past few days, and got more direct word last hour via Cort and Fatboy; their guest and friend Mike Russell had to give the bad news during their first movie chat segment. (So that's what Russell sounds like when annoyed...)
The Portland Browncoats had hoped the Firefly screenings would become annual events. Not now, unless something major changes. (This doesn't affect the Serenity charity screenings, as that film's a Universal production.)
That promised word from Fatboy: "Today was the first any of us heard. We just talked to the McMenamin's people last Friday [10/5], and they said their relationship with Fox is very good, so we're wondering if McMenamin's is going to be the exception to Fox's latest rule, as it appeared maybe people weren't securing the proper licensing before showing their screenings of Buffy.
"Although the fact they mentioned Firefly sorta throws dirt on that whole notion, since that was handled legally and as far as I know, we're the only people that ever showed Firefly in a theater.
"Basically, I don't really know any more than you do on this. We just got blindsided. We're hoping they don't shut down Angel, and we're hoping Fox doesn't shut down McMenamin's because we REALLY wanna do Firefly again next year."