Well, a few months have passed since my last post here. But the return of Star Wars in theaters (Episode VII debuts in December) and the return of my favorite series of all time (The X-Files returns to TV next January), finally brought this old Jedi Master back in business…
The X-Files reunite: Mulder, Scully, Skinner and… Barack Obama???
If you are coming back from an abduction right now, maybe you don’t know yet, but the iconic TV series from the 90’s, The X-Files is being revived as a six-episode mini-series in 2016, much to the delight of sci-fi fans everywhere. The details surrounding the plots and the development of the show’s long-standing characters have been trickling out in tiny portions since the revival entered production.
Gillian Anderson, who portrays Agent Dana Scully, has been Tweeting behind the scenes X-Files revival set pics all summer, keeping fans in the loop on the show’s developments. The lastest pics from Gillian has given fans a long awaited reunion between Agents Mulder (David Duchovny) and Scully with (current? Former?) Assistant F.B.I. director Walter Skinner (Mitch Pileggi).
Pileggi, who portrayed Walter Skinner in the previous nine seasons of The X-Files as well as the two feature film adaptations, was confirmed to be returning for the show’s revival by David Duchovny, but it’s nice to finally see him and the series’ leads reunited on set. The comical photobomb by President Obama’s portrait in the backround seems to indicate the photo was taken at F.B.I. headquarters and we are left assuming that Skinner is still working for the bureau… and maybe even enjoying a promotion?
There is no word of F.B.I. Director Alvin Kersh returning to his X-Files role as of yet, but the obligation that actor James Pickens, Jr. has to Grey’s Anatomy these days may keep him from doing so. Skinner taking over as Director of the F.B.I. would certainly be a logical event that would further illustrate the time jump from previous seasons of the show. Skinner’s co-conspirator, “The Cigarette Smoking Man” (William B. Davis), is also coming back, though these days it may in fact be the “Vigorously Vaping Man” (which doesn’t quite have the same level of mystique).
Skinner is on team X-Files nowadays, but it wasn’t always so chummy between Pileggi’s character and Agents Mulder and Scully. Skinner, when he debuted in the first season of the series, was hard on Agent Mulder because he felt that his belief in alien life was absurd. Events slowly opened Skinner’s eyes and by the seventh season he too came to believe in life from other worlds, when he witnessed a UFO with his own eyes. Skinner initially took orders from behind the scenes forces like “The Cigarette Smoking Man”, but would end up defying his shady superiors and siding with Mulder and Scully, saving their lives on more than one occasion.
Mitch Pileggi may not have been seen much as Skinner over the past 16 years, but he has managed to land roles in several major high-profile and fan favorite shows like Supernatural, Castle, Medium, Stargate: Atlantis and perhaps his most memorable role in recent years, that of scumbag Neo-Nazi leader Ernest Darby on Sons of Anarchy (he even appeared on Grey’s Anatomy opposite Pickens Jr.). Hopefully, like the X-Files revival in general, Pileggi’s return to this small screen here will be one worth welcoming.
The X-Files will return to Fox on Sunday, January 24th, 2016.
The truth is still out there
Rumors of a possible return of Mulder and Scully has emerged on the Internet since the last appearance of the duo in the 2007 film to theaters The X–Files I Want to Believe, but the failure of the film at the box office and the disinterest of the fans threw to the ground the chances of a new film or the return of the show to television. In 2013, during the celebrations of the 20 years of The X-Files, new rumors about a return to TV again popping up on the Internet, but this was only confirmed last March, when Fox announced the official return of The X-Files and what is more important with executive producer/creator Chris Carter and stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson in the fold, and now all involved are assembling in Vancouver to start production on the six-episode miniseries.
We still don’t know too much about the series’ return, but it is expected to include Skinner (Mitch Pileggi) and Cigarette Smoking Man (William B. Davis), and Joel McHale was recently added to the ensemble as a newcomer. The Community actor will play a conservative anchor of a popular internet news network who becomes an unlikely ally for Mulder.
Some months ago, Entertainment Weekly has released exclusive photos from the set of The X-Files revival season, showing returning Agents Mulder and Scully (David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson) as well as series creator/director Chris Carter, and revealing the name of the first episode, “My Struggle”.
In the photos, we also see Sveta (played by Annet Mahendru, The Americans) “who believes she is regularly abducted by aliens” and a conservative talk show host (Joel McHale, Community) who “asks Mulder and Scully to do some paranormal investigating.”
But while plot details are under wraps, there’s still plenty to be excited about. Gillian Anderson recently tweeted a picture of her new/familiar hair color, while David Duchovny got in on the anticipation with a photo of his own. Chris Carter, meanwhile, brings it home with an image of a slate teasing a “UFO test”, confirming that he’ll be behind the camera for at least the first episode of the limited series run.
Check out the teaser photos below from Anderson, Duchovny, Carter, and executive producer Glen Morgan, and do your best to contain your enthusiasm — the revival’s January 24, 2016 premiere date is still a long ways away.
Sources for text and photos: Collider, Screenrant, EW. Recommended reading:5 mysteries we hope the “X-Files” reboot will resolve.