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‘The X-Files’ Revival Nears Greenlight At Fox; Network Eyes Short Order, Gillian Anderson & David Duchovny To Return

Friday, March 20

The X-Files revival is one step closer to becoming a reality.

Fox is close to giving an official green-light to a revival of their iconic science fiction series, which originally aired between 1993 and 2002. Per sources, the network has settled on a “short-stack” order for the revival and while the exact size of the order is yet-to-be-determined, I’m told it will be less than ten episodes (though I can’t confirm the Daily Mail’s report that it will be six). It should be stressed, however, that talks with sister studio 20th Century Fox Television are still on-going.


As TVWise previously reported, the revival is aimed to close out the lingering storylines left by the series proper, which, much to the dismay of fans, were left unresolved by the second feature film I Want To Believe. I’m told that Fox landed on the “short order” for two reasons. The first being story requirements – a conclusion that execs came to after prolonged discussions with Chris Carter.

The second – and an equally important one – was scheduling. The feeling was that it would be easier for the always in demand Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny to schedule a block of time to shoot the revival with a short order. The duo, who were always committed to doing more X-Files, have, sources say, agreed to reprise their roles. It is understood than an offer has also gone out to Mitch Pileggi. Other key cast members will also return.

Still scheduling is a big factor – and one of the few remaining sticking points in getting an official pick up. The fact that Duchovny’s NBC drama Aquarius is an off-cycle Summer series helps, as does the fact that Gillian Anderson’s BBC series The Fall isn’t due to enter production on its just ordered third season until the end of this year. The hope is that production can get underway this Summer, but that is not certain at this stage.

Beyond the cast, Chris Carter is returning to the helm, will pen the scripts and will also serve as an executive producer on The X-Filesrevival. I have been unable to get a clear read on Frank Spotnitz’s involvement. Sources had indicated that having him return was Carter’s preference, but he recently committed to the third season of Tandem’s Crossing Lines, which is now filming in Europe.

An X-Files revival has been on the cards for months, with Fox finally confirming to reporters at the recent Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour that they were in talks for more X-Files. “Real progress” was made in the last month, after sources previous stated in January that Carter’s camp and Fox were “far apart” on terms. The new X-Files series follows in the footsteps of another key Fox franchise: 24 - which was successfully revived with 12 episode limited series Live Another Day.

It is hoped that the deal with the studio and other key players (including former members of the writing staff) will close soon and the X-Files revival will get that official green-light in the coming weeks. According to sources, Fox is aiming to make a “big announcement” just ahead of their upfront presentation in New York City this coming May. Representatives of both Fox and 20th Century Fox Television did not immediately respond to TVWise’s request for comment.


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