Archive for August, 2012

ScienceFiction.com: Gillian Anderson Brings Hope For An ‘X-Files 3’ Film

Aug-28-2012
Gillian Anderson Brings Hope For An ‘X-Files 3’ Film
ScienceFiction.com
Janice Kay

[Original article]

Ever since the release of ‘The X-Files: I Want to Believe’ 4 years ago, fans have been clamoring for a third ‘X-Files’ film, mainly to redeem the franchise from that last film. Everyone from the stars, David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, to the producer, Frank Spotnitz, and creator Chris Carter seem to be on board. Everyone, that is, except Fox. Now it seems something is progressing as Gillian Anderson gave some news that has X-Philes rather excited.

Anderson was in Toronto as part of a panel at the Fan Expo Canada last weekend. According to a tweet from X-Files News who was at the event, a fan had asked about the possibility of a third ‘X-Files’ film. Anderson replied, “I met with (series creator Chris Carter) before coming here and it’s looking pretty good. We (just) have to convince FOX (Studios).”

That may be easier said than done. The TV series became highly successful during its nine year run and fans of the show flocked to see the movie version in theaters earning ‘The X-Files: Fight The Future’ $189 million at the box officeworldwide. Of course it had the advantage of being released during its TV run. ‘The X-Files: I Want to Believe’, however, was released 6 years after the show was cancelled and failed to attract the same interest only earning $68 million worldwide, so convincing the studios to put money into this franchise may be a hard sell.

In an interview with Collider earlier this month, Duchovny had his own explanation as to why the second ‘X-Files’ film didn’t do so well:

“One of the greatnesses of the show was its open-endedness.  It was about possibility.  It wasn’t about closure.  It just couldn’t be.  There is no such thing as that story ever ending.  Those characters are forever searching.  That’s what they do.  Even if we’re not watching them, they’re out there, in some dimension.  Mulder and Scully are still doing their thing ‘cause that’s their nature.

I would love to do another film, or more.  I think we’re all game for it.  I know I’m kind of perplexed that Fox isn’t more (enthusiastic).  Here’s a homegrown property that you don’t have to go buy, like fuckin’ ‘Green Lantern’ or something, to make it.  Here you’ve got an actual action franchise that’s your own.  It’s weird to me, but I’m not an executive. … Why not make a homegrown franchise that is excellent, and that has proven to be excellent and interesting?”  I don’t get it, but that’s not my business.

I think Chris (Carter) is probably working on an idea, so we’ll see.  Unfortunately, with the last one, they didn’t spend the money to compete in a summer fashion, and they brought it out in the summer.  It should be a summer film.  It should be an action film.  But, the last one we made was not.  The last one we made was a dark, contemplative, small $25 million film.  It was basically an independent film.  When you come out against ‘Batman,’ it’s not going to happen.”

Hopefully we’ll know pretty soon what Carter has up his sleeve that has made Anderson excited enough to be able to make an announcement as she did! After all, interest in the franchise still remains high even after all these years.

What do you think? Would you want to see a third ‘The X-Files’ film?

Inquirer: David Duchovny talks about ‘Californication’ and Marilyn Manson

Aug-17-2012
David Duchovny talks about ‘Californication’ and Marilyn Manson
Inquirer
Ruben V. Nepales

[Original article]

LOS ANGELES—“He was dressed better than me,” said David Duchovny, wearing a polo shirt and slacks, about Jon Hamm, whom we just interviewed. The “Mad Men” actor wore a suit. “I saw him.” He joked, “I didn’t like that.”

Settling down into a chair, David said he just wrapped shooting Season Six of his TV series, “Californication,” where he plays Hank Moody, a hedonistic novelist. He confirmed that rocker Marilyn Manson will make appearances in the series. “Manson is a big fan of the show,” he disclosed. “Apparently, he signs into hotels as Hank Moody, which I find funny.” He quipped, “Coincidentally, I sign in as Marilyn Manson.”

The star explained how the rocker with the dramatic Goth make-up ended up on “Californication.” “He’s been in touch with Tom Kapinos, our show runner for years,” David explained. “They’ve been trying to work him in.”

The actor also noted for his FBI Special Agent Fox Mulder character on his previous series, “The X-Files,” added, “Hank goes into the rock ‘n’ roll world. The main guest star is this guy named Tim Minchin (he plays Atticus). He’s very talented. This position doesn’t really exist in America, but he’s a political humorist-musician. Tim writes political, philosophical and funny songs, and performs them quite powerfully. He’s the rock ‘n’ roller I’m palling around with, because I’m trying to write a rock opera for him from a book that I’ve written that he loves.”

David said, “Anyway, since Tim plays a rock star in that fictional world, he’s friends with Manson.” He said with a grin, “So, Manson just shows up every now and then.”

The Yale- and Princeton-educated actor said that his recent “biggest thrill” was that he started playing guitar about nine months ago. “Tom Kapinos started writing into the show that I’m playing guitar,” he said.

Fledgling guitarist

The fledgling guitarist sounded excited about shooting the show’s finale at the Greek Theater in LA. “It was a big concert for Tim’s character,” he recounted. “Manson also came and performed.”

Rock also dominated the series’ recent season-wrap party. David disclosed, “I got to play one of the backup guitars for Manson as he sang ‘Hotel California.’ I found it touching that he would do that for us. He appears to be a monster, but he’s actually sweet.”

The actor dished that men who think they are like his sexy, rakish character would try to tell him stories. “People think that they’re Hank Moody, and they want to tell me,” he said. “If they are under 30, I think, OK. If they are over 30, I think, no, that’s a problem. If they are 70 and they think they are Hank Moody, I go, ‘OK, cool—good for you.’ So there’s like a window—between 30 and 70, you’re in trouble if you’re acting that way.”

He talked about how the show’s characters have evolved. “It’s interesting that in the first three years of the show, Hank was the wildcard in his world,” David began. “He was the person who would go into a situation and create havoc. Then, a subtle shift happened in the last couple of years, where everybody around Hank seems crazier than he is. So, all of a sudden, Hank becomes the calmest, the voice of reason on the show.”

Relationship

“For me, the show is always about going back to the family and the relationship between my character and those of Natascha McElhone (Karen) and Maddy Martin (Becca). We can spin off into absurd scenarios and the craziness that we do, but what has made the show last is that it has heart at its center—this family, love story or father-daughter relationship.”

The New York native laughed off talk that he and his “The X-Files” co-star, Gillian Anderson are living together. “Gillian and I have been trading e-mails,” he volunteered. “Very funny. I wish I could show the thread where I wrote, ‘I’m very sorry for leaving the toilet seat up. I didn’t know you were living with me. Where are you exactly in the house?’ I just haven’t found her yet. So, it’s not true.”

David confirmed that he’s still married to actress Tea Leoni, but they are separated. Asked about the tattoo on his ring finger, he explained that it was a substitute for an actual wedding ring. “Because I would always take a ring off at work,” he said. “I don’t like wearing jewelry. So, I got this (tattoo) instead of a wedding ring.”

The 52-year-old actor sounded optimistic about another “The X-Files” movie. “I hope so (it happens),” he said. “I rent one of (creator) Chris Carter’s many homes when I’m shooting in LA.  He says he’s going to have a script. We’re all eagerly awaiting what he’s got up his sleeve.”

On his former students at Yale, where he taught English, David said, “They get in touch with me sometimes. Because of the social media, nobody can hide. One of them has become a pretty well-known writer. I taught him expositional writing. He’s a respected novelist. I had nothing to do with that.”

Collider.com: David Duchovny Talks About a Possible Third THE X-FILES Movie and What Went Wrong with THE X-FILES: I WANT TO BELIEVE

Aug-09-2012
David Duchovny Talks About a Possible Third THE X-FILES Movie and What Went Wrong with THE X-FILES: I WANT TO BELIEVE
Collider.com
Christina Radish

[Original article]

Earlier today, I had the opportunity to sit down with David Duchovny at the members-only Soho House in West Hollywood to chat about his indie feature Goats.  In the comedy, he plays Goat Man, a goat-herding sage who has lived with Ellis (Graham Phillips) and his New Age hippie mother (Vera Farmiga) since Ellis was a child, teaching him the meaning of expanding one’s mind.

While we will run the full interview tomorrow, we did want to share what Duchovny had to say about the possibility of a third The X-Files movie, especially after what writer/producer Frank Spotnitz told me about it a week ago.  Clearly up for it, he said that he doesn’t understand why Fox isn’t more enthusiastic to get it going, when it’s a homegrown action franchise that they own, and he talked about where he thinks the second film went wrong.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

Collider: When I spoke to Frank Spotnitz about a week ago, he said that he feels it’s a cultural crime that you guys haven’t gotten to finish The X-Files story, and that he doesn’t think it’s too late to do, but that it will be, if it’s not done soon.  How do you feel about it, at this point?  Have you closed the book on The X-Files, or would you like to continue it with a third film?

DAVID DUCHOVNY:  Do you know something I don’t know?  Am I dying?  No.  That book doesn’t close until somebody dies, really.  One of the greatnesses of the show was its open-endedness.  It was about possibility.  It wasn’t about closure.  It just couldn’t be.  There is no such thing as that story ever ending.  Those characters are forever searching.  That’s what they do.  Even if we’re not watching them, they’re out there, in some dimension.  Mulder and Scully are still doing their thing ‘cause that’s their nature.

I would love to do another film, or more.  I think we’re all game for it.  I know I’m kind of perplexed that Fox isn’t more [enthusiastic].  Here’s a homegrown property that you don’t have to go buy, like fuckin’ Green Lantern or something, to make it.  Here you’ve got an actual action franchise that’s your own.  It’s weird to me, but I’m not an executive.  I don’t know if they made the Green Lantern either, but I’m just using that as an example of, “Why make that film?  Why not make a homegrown franchise that is excellent, and that has proven to be excellent and interesting?”  I don’t get it, but that’s not my business.

I think Chris [Carter] is probably working on an idea, so we’ll see.  Unfortunately, with the last one, they didn’t spend the money to compete in a summer fashion, and they brought it out in the summer.  It should be a summer film.  It should be an action film.  But, the last one we made was not.  The last one we made was a dark, contemplative, small $25 million film.  It was basically an independent film.  When you come out against Batman, it’s not going to happen.  You’re not going to be sold as an independent film, and you’re not going to compete against Batman with $25 million. 

CultBox: Frank Spotnitz (‘The X-Files’) interview

Aug-07-2012
Frank Spotnitz (‘The X-Files’) interview
CultBox
William Martin

[Original article]

CultBox caught up with The X-Files writer Frank Spotnitz today to chat about his new spy drama series, Hunted.

From the makers of Spooks, the eight-part series begins on BBC One this autumn and stars Melissa George (Grey’s Anatomy) as a highly skilled operative for an elite private intelligence firm.

Best known for writing nearly 50 episodes of The X-Files, Spotnitz was also co-executive producer of Millennium and co-wrote both The X-Files movies.

Our full interview will go up next month, but in the meantime here’s what Frank had to say on the subject of The X-Files

Were you disappointed that it’s not been possible to make a third X-Files film focusing on the 2012 alien invasion to be released this year?

“Yes, I’m hugely frustrated to be honest! The studio wanted the second movie to be more of a low-budget ‘story of the week’ and I’m proud of that film, but I think what we learnt is that that’s not what the audience wants. To the movie-going audience The X-Files means aliens.

“I think it’s one of the great franchises in television history and it hasn’t been given an ending. I think that’s shameful. I know there is a great movie story to be told with these characters that would bring an end to the saga and I think it’s wrong that they haven’t done that.

“They’re running out of time. I don’t think it’s too late, but it’s going to be pretty soon. I’ve been saying for four years now that they should end this story the way it deserves.”

Would a third movie be a final conclusion then?

“Yeah, I think it would end the story. The aliens were prophesised to be coming back in December 2012 and ideally this movie would have been made to be released by that date, but I’ve never stopped talking to [the show’s creator] Chris Carter and we have a way to do it still. I would still jump at the chance to do it!”

How long have you been living in the UK now?

“I’ve been here two years and I’ve consumed as much British drama as I could! There’s so much that it’s almost embarrassing how much good stuff you guys do here. I loved The Shadow Line, Any Human Heart, so many other shows… I feel very proud to be associated in any way with the BBC.”

Are you fan of any British cult TV shows like Doctor Who, Being Human, Misfits, etc.?

“I love all of those; my children love Doctor Who in particular.”

Would you like to write a Doctor Who episode at some point?

“I’m so intimidated by it because it has such a rich heritage. I would need to just lock myself in a room and watch 100 episodes to determine whether I could add anything to it, but I think it’s superb, yes!”

Examiner: Frank Spotnitz on how ‘The X-Files’, Hitchcock paved the way for ‘Hunted’

Aug-02-2012
Frank Spotnitz on how ‘The X-Files’, Hitchcock paved the way for ‘Hunted’
Examiner
Danielle Turchiano

[Original article here]

“When The X‑Files started, the word ‘mythology’ was not in the vocabulary to describe television, and I think we kind of stumbled upon the whole method of telling stories that way by accident, because of Gillian Anderson’s pregnancy at the end of season one,” Frank Spotnitz considered how his old series paved the way for his new one, Hunted for Cinemax.

“But it amazed me, because the Internet was just sort of coming online at that point, and I remember news groups that I would look at at the beginning of the second season of The X‑Files to see how observant fans were. These are the die-hard fans, not most of the audience, but I think we began to realize that you could thread clues, and you could wait quite a long time. You could wait sometimes two or three years in the case of The X‑Files before you picked up that thread again, and not only would people follow it, they would love you for it, because you were rewarding their loyalty and their intelligence.

“It’s hard to think back to the mid ’90s, but at that point, people thought television was not particularly sophisticated, and I realized just the opposite was true. It’s very hard to be as smart as your audience, and so it emboldened us to be very ambitious with the ideas we tried to convey…I took many, many things away from The X-Files experience, but the main things were: Be ambitious, be as great as you can be, and trust in the intelligence of your audience.”

Those are the things Spotnitz is now trying to do with Hunted, a certainly ambitious series shot and set in Europe about a woman (Melissa George) working for a secretive and elite espionage service. Since she is not working for a government but instead a private sector, questions start to set in regarding if she can actually trust the intelligence she is given and the people hiring her.

“In our show, the reality is these operatives are not told who their employers are, so if you’re trying to do a paranoid spy thriller, as well, I thought that’s really interesting, not knowing. Should you succeed? Maybe it would better if you fail– better for the world if you failed. So I met many, many people who are in this business and they have many very frightening stories to tell, and I put as many of them as I could into the first season!” Spotnitz revealed.

Calling the spy genre one of his favorites and referencing The Prisoner, The Saint, Mission Impossible, I Spy, Man from U.N.C.L.E., and the James Bond franchise as his influences, Spotnitz wanted to take storytelling back to a simpler time with Hunted. He pointed to Hitchcock as that kind of master of paranoia and suspense in genre storytelling, hoping to model himself and his projects on some of Hitchcock’s early (silent) works.

“I would always rather do it without dialogue,” he bravely admitted. “I would always rather let the picture tell the story. And that’s one of the first things you give up usually in series television because there is so little time and so little money, you’re churning through directors, you can’t trust it will work without dialogue. In this case, [though] I was incredibly fortunate to have great directors, beginning with S.J. Clarkson, who directed the first two hours, and we worked so closely together…we didn’t need to have words. And so there are long sessions with no dialogue, and to me, it’s pure; it’s cinema.”

Additionally, Spotnitz pointed out that this kind of storytelling allows the audience to be more engaged with the show because they’re not being “spoon-fed everything.”

“There are things in this show where it happens in an episode and you don’t know why that was there, and you wait two or three episodes and you go, ‘Oh, that’s the connection.’ And we’re not telling you; we’re trusting you as a viewer that you’ll piece it together, and it’s more exciting, I think,” Spotnitz considered.

Over the course of eight, one-hour episodes, Hunted will visit Morocco, Scotland, Tangier, and London, to name a few, each time delivering a little bit more information about what’s really going on with the greater mystery in which George is mixed up.

“It’s one of those shows that when you get to episode eight, if you were to go back and watch episode 1 again, you’d see it was all there,” Spotnitz previewed. “It was all hidden in plain sight. You know, it’s not a mystery that’s cheating, withholding pieces. It was there if you were paying attention, and that’s very satisfying for me as a viewer when I watch mysteries like that, so there’s a lot of clues in those images that will make sense when you get to the end.

“We wanted it to be cinematic, and that meant really going to the locations, [too]” Spotnitz, who credited Cinemax for their support in allowing his big ideas to come to fruition, explained.

“It’s a lot harder and a lot more expensive, but you see it. I mean, it looks fantastic, and you see London in a way that people, especially in America, that you rarely get a chance to see. So it was really exciting for me to have the opportunity, especially as an American, to go to Europe and have the opportunity to take advantage of all these unbelievable locations that we just don’t get to see that often in this country.”

Hunted premieres on Cinemax in October 2012.

Collider.com: Writer/Producer Frank Spotnitz Talks His Desire to Make a Third X-FILES Movie and the Possibility of a MILLENNIUM Movie

Aug-02-2012

Writer/Producer Frank Spotnitz Talks His Desire to Make a Third X-FILES Movie and the Possibility of a MILLENNIUM Movie

Collider.com

Christina Radish

[Original article]

The X-Files writer/producer Frank Spotnitz has created the compelling eight-episode international espionage series Hunted for Cinemax, to premiere on October 26th.  The story follows Sam Hunter (Melissa George), a skilled operative for Byzantium, a secretive private firm involved in global intelligence and espionage, that may have personally been responsible for orchestrating an attempt on her life, leaving her with no idea who to trust.

While at the TCA Press Tour, Collider spoke to Frank Spotnitz for this exclusive interview.  We will run what he had to say about that series closer to its premiere, but we did want to share what his comments about whether he still wants to do a third The X-Filesmovie, why it would be a cultural crime not to finish the series, how it would need to happen pretty soon, and what he’s most happy about when he looks back at his work on the series and movies.  He also talked about what it might take for a Millennium movie to happen.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

Collider: Do you feel like you’ve closed the book now on The X-Files, or is there still another chapter to tell there?  Do you still want to do a third movie?

FRANK SPOTNITZ:  I absolutely do!  I think everybody should write to 20th Century Fox.  I’ve been saying for years now that I feel it’s a cultural crime that they have not finished the series.  The second movie did not perform the way anybody wanted it to at the box office.  I’m proud of that movie, but it makes sense to me that it didn’t.  It was released at the height of summer, and it was a story-of-the-week.  That’s not what the movie-going audience wanted.  The movie-going audience wanted the aliens.  That’s what they know The X-Files for.  And that story is not done, and it should be finished.  I don’t think it’s too late, but I think it’s gonna be, pretty soon.  I’m still agitating with everyone I can grab to say, “Let’s make this movie while we still can!”

When you look back at the time you spent making the show and the movies, what are you happiest about, and are there things you still wish you could go back and change?

SPOTNITZ:  Oh, yeah, always!  Unfortunately, my personality is that way.  It’s true with Hunted, too.  I’m like, “Oh, that’s good, but this wasn’t good enough.”  I just look to what I consider failures.  Other people might be like, “Oh, that was great,” but I’ll be like, “No, to me, that was not.”  I’m sure with The X-Files, there are plenty of things that I wish had been better.  But, The X-Files was the central experience of my professional life.  It was my first job in television.  It taught me everything that I’ve taken with me since, and it was a huge success.  I just feel so blessed to have something like that in my life.  How many people get to be a part of something like that?  I really made a lot of close friendships, with Chris Carter and Vince Gilligan, and I’m still friends with a lot of the actors.  I still see Gillian [Anderson] and talk to David [Duchovny].  It’s a treasure and a blessing to have something like that. 

Lance Henriksen recently talked about his desire to make a Millennium movie.  Is that something you’d like to go back and revisit?

SPOTNITZ:  I would!  It’s a harder case to make for Millennium because Millennium was one of those shows that was a critical darling, but never found the mass audience that it deserved.  But, I get asked about that.  There are amazing fans for both series.  The Millennium guys are publishing a book this summer.  They’re really clever about trying to make this happen.  If they knocked on my door and we could do it, I would absolutely do it, but it’s a tough sell.