X-Files was the kind of show you needed to pay attention to, as if you lost your focus for even one minute, it was possible you would miss some vital information about bees, black goo, alien encounters, smoking men or secret government bases.
I’m sure there are some of you who can recite details of who was abducted when, when Mr X,Y or Z died, and what brand of seeds Fox ‘Spooky’ Mulder preferred to eat. But how much do you know about the making of the show itself?
Below, for your eyes only, are 13 Spooky and Mysterious X-Files Facts. Please lock the doors, unplug your phone and check that your watch hasn’t stopped. And don’t forget that the truth is still out there…
1) The Show Was Originally Rejected
Creator Chris Carter’s original pitch to Fox was rejected, but after he made changes and returned a few weeks later they changed their mind and commissioned the pilot episode.
2) It Was Partly Influenced By Silence Of The Lambs…
Silence of the Lambs inspired the series to be based on FBI agents, as it was thought this would give a plausible reason for the main characters to be involved in so many weird and wonderful cases.
3) …And Jodie Foster Made An ‘Appearance’
Jodie Foster played a tattoo in a 4th Series episode entitled ‘Never Again’. Yes, you read that correctly.
4) Chris Carter Thought David Duchovny Was ‘Slow’…
Apparently Duchovny did a great audition but talked too slowly, leading Chris Carter to assume that he wasn’t particularly clever.
5) …And Gillian Anderson Spent Alot Of Her Time Standing On A Box
Due to a 9-inch height difference between the two leads, whilst filming scenes where Mulder and Scully were face to face, Anderson often had to stand on a box.
6) The Cigarette Smoking Man Was Originally An Extra
Actor William B. Davis’ first appeared on The X-Files as background actor with no dialogue. At that time neither her nor the anyone else knew he would end up becoming the show’s main antagonist.
7) Mitch Pileggi Got The Part Of Skinner By Being In A Grumpy Mood…
Apparently Chris Carter thought Pileggi was only acting this way and thought it fit perfectly with the character of Walter Skinner.
8) …And He Later Married ‘Dana Scully’!
Pileggi met his wife, Arlene Warren on the show. She was Scully’s stand-in, but did later appear on the show as Skinner’s assistant.
9) The Smiths Influenced The Famous Theme Song…
The theme song’s famous whistle effect was inspired by the track ‘How Soon Is Now?’ by The Smiths.
10) …And The Echo Effect On It Was Created By Accident
Composer Mark Snow created the echo effect on the theme song by accident. Whilst struggling to perfect the track, he put his arm on his keyboard in frustration, accidentally activating an echo effect setting that complimented it perfectly.
11) It Was The First American Show To Break Japan In A Decade
X-Files was the first American produced show to succeed in Japan in a decade, and the only American show to have a regular prime-time spot on a Japanese TV network.
12) Richard Dawkins Isn’t A Fan
In 1998, Dawkins wrote that ‘The X-Files systematically purveys an anti-rational view of the world which, by virtue of its recurrent persistence, is insidious’. Er, ok then…
13) In Reality, Mulder Is The Sceptic And Scully The Believer
In creating the show, Chris Carter flipped established gender stereotypes and made Mulder the believer and Scully the sceptic. In reality though, things are different, with Duchovny being the non-believer and Anderson the open-minded one.