MX23RW : Wednesday, January 16 02:19:45

Live: 'The X-Files' reunion panel with David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson

Live: 'The X-Files' reunion panel with David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson
Read live coverage of the 20th anniversary reunion panel for The X-Files, direct from Comic-Con in San Diego.

Arguably the defining series of its generation, The X-Files celebrates its 20th anniversary with a huge reunion panel at Comic-Con.

Present will be David Duchovny (Mulder) and Gillian Anderson (Scully), as well as creator Chris Carter and a host of writers from the show.

As well as reminiscing about the TV series, which ran to 202 episodes over nine seasons, high on the agenda will be the possibility of a follow-up to the 2008 feature film.

Please note that all times in this live blog are Pacific, which is eight hours behind the UK and three hours behind the East Coast.


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3.19pmSo here we are for the highlight of today's lineup in Ballroom 20, The X-Files reunion panel. Surprisingly a large number of people left after the last panel for Sherlock - the kids of today, eh? - which is good news for the thousands of people who have been waiting patiently outside today.

3.20pmWell, "patiently" is an assumption I suppose.

3.21pmFor me, this is one of the most exciting panels to have been scheduled at Comic-Con in the last few years. The X-Files was an immense part of my childhood and absolutely set the blueprint for pretty much every genre show you see on TV right now.

3.23pmI'm sure the issue of favourite episodes will come up in the panel, but you'd be hard pressed to find many better episodes of any TV show than 'Clyde Bruckman's Final Repose' from season three.

3.25pmSadly I think Duchovny and Anderson are the only cast members on today's panel. It would have been nice to see Mitch Pileggi (who has a recurring role on clone-show Supernatural), Nicholas Lea and of course that big naughty old fag smoker.

3.28pmProbably another five minutes or so until they all come on stage to Catatonia's 'Road Rage'.

3.30pmCheers as a life-size cardboard cutout of Mulder holding Scully is inexplicably wheeled out onto the stage.

3.32pmLights down for an advert for TV Guide, which is sponsoring the panel.

3.34pmMichael Schneider, "TV Guide Magazine Los Angeles bureau chief" (what a mouthful), is the moderator for this panel. He's slipped in a Murder, She Wrote reference already. By my count that takes The Angela Lansbury Tally for today up to three so far.

3.35pmOn the panel: producers David Amann, Vince Gilligan, Howard Gordon, Darin Morgan, Glen Morgan, John Shiban and Jim Wong, plus Carter, Duchovny and Anderson.

3.36pmThis really is a star-studded lineup of producers.

3.39pmChris Carter comes out brandishing a camera and takes a snap of the crowd.

3.40pmBefore we get Mulder and Scully, clip time.

3.41pmIt was actually just the opening sequence but with the lights still down at the end, Mulder and Scully come out on the blackened stage WITH TORCHES! Incredible cheers from the crowd.

3.41pmOf the aliens' prophecised invasion at the end of 2012, Carter: "They came and they're just... delaying their entrance."

3.42pm"I've told this story a million times," says Carter, before explaining how Fox picked up the show.

3.43pmHow do they look back on the show 20 years later? Anderson: "I guess I didn't realise that Mulder was so cool until a few years later. Then I thought 'damn, should have gone there sooner.' Oh, am I supposed to behave myself?" Duchovny: "No, go on, please."

3.44pmWill we ever get the Mulder-Scully sex scene? Anderson: "We shot it. It's somewhere." She turns to Duchovny. "I bet you've said that before."

3.45pmGilligan: "There would be no Breaking Bad without The X-Files. I started off my association with The X-Files as a fan. I love dit and when the opportunity arose for me to write for it, I felt very lucky. I learned everything I know about producing and writing for television from this job. I was lucky to be part of it."

3.46pmGordon: "I did learn a tremendous amount. It was a group of people who taught each other, and figured out on the fly. I carried it with me and I think about it still."

3.47pmWhy do they want to keep doing it? Duchovny: "I always thought the show had any possibility. It was so flexible and could encompass so many ideas. We could do it forever. We will. As much as we can."

3.47pm24 is coming back for a limited TV run, would they want to do that? Anderson: "No. But a film would be great."

3.48pmHow would the show look in 2013? Carter: "Not all that different. The show is very dark by design. The technology has changed and that would affect some things, but I think what we did is what we'd do now."

3.49pmShiban's son played Scully's baby in season eight. "He's here today actually!" Anderson: "He looks like me."

3.51pmThe season ten comic book just came out - how canon is it? Carter: "It's a comic book series, so the stories are more comic booky. We wanted to make it true to the characters. They're good on their own. They're called season ten."

3.52pmWould we see Doggett and Rayes again on the big screen? Carter: "I think that's a trick question."

3.53pmAny regrets killing The Lone Gunmen? Shiban: "They're great characters. When it came the time that the spinoff series was not picked up, that's when the discussions started. We wanted to give them closure. Their death came up and some of us were for it, some were against it. It was an honourable death."

3.54pmAre they tired of talking about 'Home'? Morgan gives a very long recollection about how he came up with the idea of the episode, including reference to a film involving brotherly incest and Charlie Chaplin's autobiography.

3.58pmAnderson checks an imaginary watch. This anecdote now involves otters from Sea World.

3.59pmFave Mulder-Scully moments. Duchovny: "I like the one from Post-Modern Prometheus when we got up to dance. It had a great feeling to it." Anderson: "Someone recently told me about the conversation on the rock. I don't actually remember it." Duchovny: "I think it's where I said I wish I was born with one leg." Anderson: "Okay."

4.00pmFave baddie? Gilligan: "Gosh, so many. He's not a bad guy at all really, but the wonderful character played by Peter Boyle, Clyde Bruckman. He was not the bad guy but the engine of the story."

4.02pmGilligan: "I did an episode with Bryan Cranston at the beginning of season six, 'Drive'. Meeting him and working with him was fruitful for me personally."

4.03pmKrycek comes up. Gordon: "He was mostly someone to fill space in Gillian's maternity leave. He was a stop-gap who grew into this wonderful character who lost so much, including his arm."

4.06pmG.Morgan: "Eugene Victor Tooms." Applause.

4.07pmAnderson: "I was also gonna say Tooms, but then the oil guy. Who was he? The big guy?" Carter: "Did you watch the show?"

4.07pmCarter: "The peacock brothers, but actually I'm just going to take the opportunity to give a nod to John Neville, who played the well-manicured man. He died in the last couple years and he was an amazing asset to the show."

4.09pmAudience Q&A. If Mulder and Scully went on a date, what would they do? Anderson: "Have sex." Duchovny: "Then maybe dinner?"

4.10pmWas there a scene that Anderson was unable to shoot? And a request for dialogue. Anderson: "Are there kids in the audience?"

4.11pmWas there a monster of the week that never made it to air? Gilligan: "I asked Drew Barrymore to be in the show. I was going to do this character where she had the amazing godlike power over people, children in the cornfield. But it never happened."

4.12pmWas there a moment where they thought the two characters were in love? Carter: "I think it's when you first walked into his office in the basement."

4.13pmHow important do they think having a strong female lead was for the entire genre? Anderson: "In terms of the feedback I've gotten from women the last couple of decades, Scully had quite a huge impact on people. There are aspects of her personality, her personal strength... she was also a decent human being."

4.14pmCarter: "Scully was kind of my fantasy woman. She's strong and smart and opinionated, resourceful and tough."

4.15pmWhy was there a spiritual/religious aspect to Scully's character? Carter: "She was a scientist, but that made her character slightly one-dimensional. If she had a religious upbringing, it was always tearing at her that she had this side of her that was irrational."

4.16pmQuestion about the show's influence on the genre. Carter: "People credit us with making popular this mythology formula, that you could have a show that had a serialised quality. There was a show called Wiseguy that was serialised long before us. But I think that we showed that you could actually have a spine to the show, which was an ongoing storyline, that people would come back to week after week."

4.18pmBetter to shoot in Vancouver or LA? Duchovny: "We grew up as a show in Vancouver, it all came together there, so nostalgically for me, that will always be The X-Files's home. The energy of beginnings and getting to know all these people, it was all one piece." Anderson: "I think I have to agree. In both places we created families, both of them were equally strong and very different."

4.21pmQuestion from a girl who was inspired by Scully to do a Physics Phd. Anderson: "A lot of women have come up to me and told me they went into Physics because of Scully." Duchovny: "Men often come up to me and say they got into Scully because of me."

4.22pmWhich episode creeped them out the most? D. Morgan: "Beyond The Sea. Just kiddin." Carter: "I think seeing Darin in that toilet was pretty creepy."

4.24pmWhat inspired Jose Chung's From Outer Space? D.Morgan: "The original idea for the episode, which I had before the show started, was the idea of two kids being abducted by aliens, and then a third alien comes down and abducts them all. Jim Wong told me 'never pitch that idea' but then he left the show the next season."

4.26pmGirl confronts Anderson about her statement that she would never do TV again but then she came back for The Fall. "It was mostly just because of the time commitment. When the series ended, I didn't know if I wanted to be on another set again period, just after exhaustion. But after enough time passed and saying no for such a long time to so many things, it was just about timing. When The Fall came across my desk, it was exactly the type of material I like. I feel very strongly about that piece. Then NBC offered me a short arc on Hannibal and I said to them from the beginning I wouldn't do any more than that, but then the character grew on me."

4.28pmWill they ever work together again not as Mulder and Scully? Anderson: "Apparently not." Duchovny: "I've always thought there was something not sacred but special about Mulder and Scully. It would have to be something special to cross the line of those characters."

4.29pmX-Files 3, when? Carter: "You need a reason to get excited about doing it again, but coming here today and seeing all these people..." I think that's all we're getting.

4.30pmAnderson is now auctioning off the cardboard cutout on stage. She's bullying people to part with their cash.

4.31pmThat's a wrap on this panel and today at Comic-Con. Thanks so much for joining me - I'll be back tomorrow for Veronica Mars, Kick-Ass 2, Game of Thrones, Amazing Spider-Man and more. Until then!

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