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This story first appeared in the May 24 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
For a few of the writers gathered, this was the first time they had seen one another since Chris Carter‘s conspiracy-laden sci-fi drama — which, at its height, was abducting nearly 20 million viewers a week — finished its Emmy-winning run 11 years ago. Heck, the last time Vince Gilligan saw David Duchovny — who also wrote and directed a handful of episodes in addition to starring as FBI agent Fox Mulder — was at the wrap party.
But the show has remained with them, as they’ve gone on to become some of the most respected showrunners in Hollywood.
As Gilligan confides, “Everything we do on Breaking Bad, we learned on The X-Files.” And though the TV landscape has changed drastically, they collectively agree that not much would need to be tweaked to put The X-Files on the air today.
As for what Mulder would be up to, Carter is convinced he’d still be an FBI agent. “He’s a lifer,” he says, with Gilligan noting, “since the budget is all going to Homeland Security, he’d be even further in the basement.”
Duchovny used the reunion as an opportunity to identify those who crafted some of Mulder’s more uncomfortable scenes. “Who wrote the episode where I had to appear in a Speedo?” he asks the nine writers assembled. Carter sheepishly raises his hand. When Jeff Bell asks whether that was worse than the episode featuring chicken wire and oil, Duchovny laughs. “Oh God, that was horrible,” he says. “Who was that?” Again, Carter raises his hand.
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