Wed, Jul 30, 2008 - Page 14 News List

The truth is still out there

It has taken 10 years for 'The X-Files' to finally return to the big screen. Director Chris Carter reveals what in the heavens took him so long

By John Patterson  /  THE GUARDIAN , LONDON

Is there a difference between The X-Files pre- and post-9/11? Some believe those terrorist attacks involved a government conspiracy and cover up; the attacks came just as The X-Files, which was speciously linked in the 1990s with rightwing fantasies about new world orders, alien abductions and the militia movement, was concluding its final season.

“I think we changed, the world changed, once and for all and forever. You could tell a story about this new zeitgeist, but we chose not to. We chose to tell a more classic X-Files story that goes back to the basic fundamentals of the show: it’s only as scary as it is believable, if it takes place within the realm of ‘extreme possibility,’ and it doesn’t always need a political context to be interesting.”

Then there were the show’s famously attentive (and anal-retentive) fans, posting their approval or lack thereof on a million X-Files bulletin boards, which was both a good and a bad thing, says Carter. “That was the revolutionary thing about the show. We had an immediate connection with our fans, which first created an intimacy, which in turn created an incestuousness, which then created politics, which created all the things that go with that ease of communication.

“While it’s been a great thing, it could also be a dangerous thing, if you try to please or appease everyone, which we don’t. We don’t read fan fiction, we don’t take ideas from fans. We listen to them, which you can do to the point of insanity. Oh, we had lobbies, quorums, caucuses — you could go on and on — all of them trying to make us go back to Scully’s original hairdo! You could get lost in this stuff pretty quickly. So we always do what we do best, which is go with our gut instincts. The scary thing is that there are fans who now know more about The X-Files than I do.”

NOTE: The X-Files: I Want to Believe is released in Taiwan on Friday.


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