The X-Files Makes History

The longrunning science fiction television phenomenon The X-Files will reappear after a six-year hiatus in a second film to be released in theaters next week. But the show that brought to life Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully and added "The Truth Is out There" and "I Want to Believe" to pop lexicon is also finally showing its age.

This morning X-Files director/writer/producer Chris Carter was at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History to present a series of items from the show to be placed on exhibit when the museum reopens this fall.

The items signed over to the Smithsonian include: the original television pilot script, an alien maquette statue, Scully's cross necklace, the stiletto blade weapon used to kill aliens masquerading as people, the original "I Want to Believe" poster, a photograph of Mulder's abducted sister, and a series of FBI badges and business cards used in the show.

“Standing up here feels like an X-file in itself,” said Carter, reflecting on where the show has taken him over the past 16 years.

He said The X-Files is "representative of two very exploitable American qualities: fear and paranoia."

"I’m kidding of course,” he added. “I think the show, as you will see when you come to see the movie on July’ll see that the show is really about hope and faith.”

Fellow writer/producer Frank Spotnitz also spoke on the show's legacy.

“We’re at the center of our country, and when the nation's museum decides to include The X-Files as part of its permanent collection, it makes very tangible and real the impact that The X-Files has had.”

Carter said the film, The X-Files: I Want to Believe, was written both to attract a new audience as well as appeal to hardcore fans.

“I would say the conspiracy is non-existent in the movie. That’s not to say that the mythology of the show is completely put in a drawer.”

The most difficult part about writing after a six-year gap, he said, was getting back into the heads of two characters who he admits are a large part of the driving force behind the show.

“Writing the first scene with them together, where they are speaking for the first time, to me, to us, that was a scene that I have to say took an inordinate amount of time, and effort, and thought, and care and struggle because what do two people have to say to each other when we haven’t seen them for five or six years?"

The X-Files ran for nine seasons (1993-2002) and was followed up with the first feature-length film, The X-Files: Fight the Future, in 1998. With the characters' office located in the FBI Headquarters in D.C., much of the show's central storyline took place in and around the city.

When asked about how helpful the FBI was in the creation of the show, Carter explained that they weren't initially on board, and typically had more questions than answers.

“Right before the pilot episode aired, there was a call from the FBI saying who are you and what are you doing.” He said they have since become unofficial fans of the series, and even asked him to film something for the FBI's 100th anniversary being celebrated this year.


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