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Feature: The X-Files

EXIT Strategies

Central to The X-Files, but not for much longer: Gillian Anderson with Annabeth Gish and Robert Patrick

This time, she means it. Gillian Anderson tells Jean Cummings why she's exiting The X-Files

When The X-Files' producer and creator Chris Carter was asked if the current season would be Gillian Anderson's last, he hedged his bets with a ‘never say never' response. The actress herself is not so cautious.

"I will not be doing another season. I do not know whether, if I was asked to come in for one or two episodes, that's something I might consider in the future, but it would be as a favor. I have not been asked that, and I will not even consider that until I've experienced not being on the show for a while. But this is most definitely my final full-time season. My contract is up."

And there lies the key to her comments. You see, when David Duchovny announced that he'd be departing at the end of season seven, Gillian's threat to follow in Duchovny's footsteps led to a new two-year contract which would keep her around for seasons eight and nine with a lucrative new deal.

That contract will now expire at this series's end, and with the introduction of Robert Patrick last season and three new cast members this year who've become full-time regulars, Gillian seems certain to move on to new ventures.

The prospect of taking on other roles outside the series is obviously exciting, but Anderson is wise enough to know she'll always be associated with The X-Files. Indeed, she doesn't deny that it'll be odd next year when it's time for production to resume for a new season, and she's not part of it.

"I think that initially what I have noticed over the past few years is that when it comes that time of the year, I start to feel like, ‘Okay, it's time to go back to school'," she says with a chuckle. "'It's time to go back to Scully...'

"I don't know whether another project around that same time will satisfy that urge or not yet, because I've always known that I was coming back to this. So I think that will be very strange. I think that there will be an initial relief and celebration, but at the same time a huge amount of sadness. And I think that there will be a definite mourning process that will need to take place, whether it's immediate or months from now.

"I'm sure that it's going to be very strange to be in my life, and all of a sudden I'll hear the theme somewhere – hopefully not from somebody whistling it from across the street, though, you know what I mean? – and not be a part of it. It's been a big part of my life that will continue to live as a huge part of my life in my body and in my consciousness and I will honor that..."

by Jean Cummings

Get the full five-page feature, with more pictures from The X-Files Season Nine and Gillian's thoughts on her last scenes with Duchovny, when you buy Xposé #63

Image © 20th Century Fox.
Feature © Visual Imagination 2001. Not for reproduction

Excerpts taken from
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Xposé #63
January 2002
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