The Firefly and Serenity Database

"Into the Black" is a Firefly fan film production by Shindigital about the crew of the Samsara and their adventures. Information about the project can be found in the 2010 interview with Titan Books.


"The project initially started at a Vancouver Browncoats meet-up for a movie premier in the spring of 2005. Abbey Spracklin had recently moved to Vancouver from Newfoundland, was looking to connect with local Firefly fans, and was also interested in doing a fan film. At the movie, they met Laura Sutherland who was also interested the idea. A little later on, Abbey and Laura went to a Browncoat Shindig celebrating Jewel Staite's birthday, where they met up with a number of like minded people, including Eric Tong. Together, they began to put together what would become Into the Black."


Production on the first episode, "Mined Control", began in the summer of 2006 in Vancouver. Due to numerous unforeseen behind the scenes issues, filming wasn't completed until the spring of 2011. A host of computer and formatting problems have plagued the project and caused delays with post production. As of May, 2014, a new editor had stepped forward to help finally get Mined Control completed. From 2014 to the present, the project has cycled through a few editor's hands, but unfortunately, no further progress on completing the episode has been made to date.


  • The interior sets of Samsara's galley and infirmary were built in Abbey Spracklin's garage.
  • The cockpit set was built in the shop for Brant FX in Langley.
  • The sets were largely constructed from materials acquired from the various TV series that filmed in Vancouver, many of which were in Aaron Harrison's personal collection.
  • The Judge's Opera Box from the "Spellingg Bee" episode of Psych season 1, was used in the building of the infirmary/galley set. Troy Rudolph worked on Psych as an Assistant Director at the time and was able to acquire the discarded set.
  • Set pieces from Andromea and Battlestar Galactica were used to build both the Infirmary/galley and the cockpit. Most of the electronics from the cockpit came from the CIC set on BSG, which Troy Rudolph acquired after the show ended.
  • While Katie Maxwell did do up a number of costume designs for each character, the individual actors were given free reign to create their character's looks.
  • Additional episodes were planned as a follow-up to Mined Control, many of which were mapped out. A script was written for the second episode, "Harem". This saw the crew being hired to rescue a girl who had been kidnapped and sold into sex slavery.
  • In true Firefly fashion, "Mined Control" was actually the show's second episode. The pilot was deemed too expensive to film at the time. The producers were unsure whether it would ever be filmable but considered releasing the script on the website so that fans could see how the crew came together.
  • Similarly to how Joss Whedon crafted the world of Firely, some of the characters in Into the Black had secrets that were hinted at and would eventually be revealed as the show progressed.
  • Despite the similarities in names, the producers were unaware of popular Geek singer Marian Call when they named Marion Call.
  • Segements for a follow-up "bottle" episode, titled "This One Time" were filmed. The story revolved around the idea that the ship had broken down on a frozen asteroid and the characters were sitting around in the ship recanting stories from their past. The scenes of the cast telling the stories (which were to be intercut with flashback to the actual events) were filmed while construction on the cockpit was underway. The episode was never completed.
  • After meeting him through a mutual friend, Nathan Fillion, upon hearing about ItB, gave Troy Rudolph a $300 donation towards the cost of producing the show.
  • Global Nation News in Canada did a news story on ItB which aired across the country.
  • During pre-production, the show went through a number of cast and crew changes. This included 3 directors coming and going before Aaron Harrison volunteered to direct, and the characters of Hank, Call and Sera having to be recast.
  • Though he doesn't use it at all in Mined Control, Capt. Jon Lee is seen in publicity photos wielding a katana. Troy Rudolph is a proficient swordsman and that was to be incorporated into the character.
  • During the course of production, Laura Sutherland moved from Vancouver to Edmonton (before eventually moving back). This required a quick rewrite and a photo double to explain Kitty's absence from an important scene.
  • The only available scripted ItB segments can be found on the Into the Black YouTube page. They are a special Christmas episode and a short clip filmed for the Vancouver Can't Stop the Serenity screening. Also included are clips from a convention panel, the Global National News Story, a trailer and a Behind the Scenes clip from the last day of filming.
  • A running gag throughout the series was to be that Sammy was the only one who didn't speak a word of Chinese and always had to have someone translate it for him.


  • Executive Producers: Abbey Spracklin, Laura Sutherland, Eric Tong
  • Producer: Troy Rudolph
  • Written by: Abbey Spracklin, Eric Tong, Troy Rudolph
  • Director: Aaron Harrison
  • Director of Photography/Camera Operator: Matthew Campbell
  • Original Music Composed by: Robert Kuhlman
  • Into The Black Theme written and performed by: Robert Kuhlman
  • Hair and Make-up: Katie Maxwell, Miranda Coombe


  • Jon Lee, "The Captain" - Troy Rudolph
  • Marion Call, "The Doctor" - Aaron Harrison
  • Katrina "Kitty" Tsang, "The Mercenary"- Laura Sutherland
  • Seraphina "Sera" York, "The Crime Princess" - Miranda Coombe
  • Hank Forsberg, "The Bodyguard" - Sean Bygrave
  • Samson "Sammy" West, "The Engineer" - Jason Begg
  • The Boss - Katie Maxwell
  • Tall - Matthew Campbell
  • Short - Rick Dwyer


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