Duchovny: I Felt Queasy Hooking Up With Co-Star Gillian After We Spent Six Years Apart
IT'S one of the most eagerly anticipated movies of the year ...but The X-Files co-stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson didn't seem that keen to get back together on screen. David admits they had hardly seen each other since the TV show ended six years ago and that he was "queasy" at the thought of returning to his most famous role. But once the 46-year-old was reunited with Gillian on the set of the new film, The X-Files: I Want To Believe, it was all sweetness and light.
"It's almost like going back to a relationship you thought was over, so it's a little queasy at first," said David. "But what got me over that hesitation was the first scene I did with Gillian. Everything kind of clicked and that's when it really felt like, OK this is The X-Files, this is Mulder and Scully."
There had been rumours of off-screen tension between the pair and David admitted they hadn't exactly been bosom buddies since the TV series ended. But now he has only nice things to say about Gillian.
The actor said: "We haven't really kept in touch. She moved to London, so we were in email touch a little bit. But I've only seen her since 2002 probably two or three times. I didn't understand what she said. She has an English accent now. No, I am just kidding. It was a highlight for me to work with her again. The first scene was just great. We immediately felt there was still a connection."
Of course, the biggest connection was the "will they, won't they" storyline between Fox Mulder and Dana Scully. And when the actors were photographed during filming recently in what looked like a clinch, fans turned the internet white hot as they discussed whether the mystery plot would have the pair finally hooking up.Later, David claimed they had pretended to kiss as a joke for photographers. But now he says it was the director Chris Carter who staged it to throw people off. David shook his head as he said: "I would never say it was just a joke. The relationship does evolve."
So there's a kissing scene?
"No, I won't speak on the kiss," he insisted. "I mean, I know there was a planting of misinformation by producers. Therefore, it makes everything suspect, and I think that's a good thing."
It's been 10 years since the original movie and six years since the TV series ended. The fact that fans are getting so hot and bothered about a kiss shows the level of hysteria over one of sci-fi's greatest franchises. And fans will be familiar with the title. I Want To Believe was the slogan on a poster in UFO-obsessed agent Mulder's office. You'd have thought it would be another aliens theme, like the first movie, but you'd be wrong. For The X-Files was always as much about the supernatural, the paranormal, weird and the freaky as it was about aliens. Some episodes, such as the child exorcism in The Calusari, were spine-chilling. And David reveals they are going back to what fans loved about the first couple of series in the new film.
"It's very dark and frightening," he said. "We forgot, as we grew older and the show became so big, that it got so popular because it was that scary. This movie goes back to the original impetus of The X-Files, which is to scare the pants off people."
Since the television series finished, David has starred in another hit TV series, Californication, as sex-obsessed Hank Moody, for which he won a Golden Globe for Best Actor earlier this year. Meanwhile, Gillian, who won a Best Actress Emmy and Golden Globe in 1997 for The X-Files, played Lady Dedlock in the multi-award-winning television adaptation of Bleak House three years ago. She has also been in movies The Last King Of Scotland and Straightheads. But David admits he had hoped he'd be back as Mulder a lot sooner. He thought the second movie would have happened in 2004 or 2005. Because of the delay, the characters have been allowed to fray that bit more.
Dad-of-two David, who is married to actress Tea Leoni, said: "I will share a little secret about this movie with you - Mulder's quest is to rediscover the energy from the beginning. By the end of this movie, he's more like the original Mulder that started out in 1993." Back then, Mulder always believed he would uncover the truth and unmask the lies. But he has lost every battle and has been beaten down by life. The last time we saw him in 2002, he was on the run from the FBI, who had closed down The X-Files. The actor admits there is a lot of chasing and being chased again in the movie. It's set in wintry Virginia and sees Mulder and Scully investigating the disappearance of a group of women. Billy Connolly plays a priest called Father Joe while Amanda Peet and rapper Xzibit are FBI agents.
David said: "Mulder is probably less plugged in than the last time we saw him. He's less into the quest that we got to know him in. But by the end of the movie, he's back to where he was. He's re-motivated. He's reinvigorated. So, this particular story is really about this character finding his way again."
With Californication making waves around the world and a blockbuster movie waiting in the wings, David is in the best place he's been since The X-Files first caused a sensation on both sides of the Atlantic. But X-Files fans shouldn't hold their breath for a new television series. The franchise will continue on the big screen only.
David laughed: "None of us wanna do the television show again. But we like the idea of coming back every four or five years and trying it again."
It seems David wants to believe, like so many X-Files fans, for just a little longer.
The X-Files: I Want To Believe is in cinemas from August 1.
WHAT SCARES DAVID?
DAVID DUCHOVNY admits to liking the scary side of X-Files, but his two biggest fears are clowns and sharks. He said: "I'm not a big fan of clowns, they are a little scary. But what actually terrifies me is the idea of being eaten by a shark. I like to swim in the ocean, so I think about sharks much more than anybody should. None of us should ever think about sharks when we're in the ocean, yet we do. I resent the fact that my ocean-going experience has been ruined by Jaws."
Perhaps unsurprisingly, he believes that "we are not alone out there", although he adds that he doesn't think much about life after death. He said: "It just makes sense that there are more forms of life than just us. Yet I don't feel the need to prove it. I know that I can't and I don't feel the need to yell at people who may disagree with me."
'What got me over the hesitation was the first scene I did with Gillian. Everything clicked'