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Variety: Fox Sets 'X-Files' for 8th Season

Fox Sets ‘X-Files’ for 8th Season
Josef Adalian

NEW YORK (Variety) – “The X-Files” will be back for an eighth season on Fox next fall — but whether star David Duchovny will return as well remains a mystery.

Fox Broadcasting Co. and series creator/exec producer Chris Carter have inked a deal to bring the 20th Century Fox TV show back to the Fox network for at least one more year, with future seasons a possibility. Gillian Anderson has signed on to reprise her role as FBI agent Dana Scully, but negotiations for Duchovny to return as FBI agent Fox Mulder were still ongoing late Tuesday.

Industry insiders said there’s a no better than a 50/50 chance that Duchovny would agree to come back to the Sunday night success. His return hinges on the settlement of his lawsuit against Fox’s syndication arm alleging the company short-changed him on his backend profit.

Carter has prepared an “X-Files” season finale in which Duchovny’s agent Mulder is abducted by aliens. Should Duchovny ink a new deal, his character can easily be returned to Earth; if not, Mulder will probably remain lost in space.

Despite speculation “X” will move production back to Vancouver from Los Angeles, insiders said it’s more likely the show will stay in California.

Carter is already under contract to Fox through an overall deal, but the producer was given substantial monetary enticements to remain with the show next fall. His “X” spinoff “The Lone Gunmen” has also been picked up as a midseason replacement in the 2000-01 season.

While Fox only has “X” for one more year, next season’s story arcs may open the door to additional years of the series, according to Fox Television Entertainment Group chairman Sandy Grushow.

“The intent of this (upcoming) season is to add some new characters and elements so this show could go to a ninth year and beyond,” he said.

“Everyone at Fox couldn’t be more excited and enthusiastic about ‘The X-Files’ remaining a key component of our Sunday nights,” added Grushow. Carter issued a brief statement saying he’s “pleased that the show will be returning next season.

“There are still so many stories to tell,” he added.

While Duchovny has been a key component of the success of “The X-Files,” Fox execs ultimately decided the show can survive without him. Indeed, ratings for the series have been slipping over the past two seasons, and some industry insiders think the addition of a new cast member could actually provide a creative jolt.

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