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Look for a more mature Mulder in ‘X-Files’

BEVERLY HILLS – David Duchovny looks uncomfortable.

Having to face 200-plus reporters, bloggers and columnists in a darkened hotel ballroom is not the best way to discuss his sexually charged Showtime comedy series, “Californication.”

He’s sharing the stage with Mary-Louise Parker of “Weeds,” Michael C. Hall of “Dexter” and Jason Clarke of “Brotherhood” – all of whom also look uncomfortable in this painfully slow news conference during the Television Critics Association’s fall preview tour here.

Dressed in jeans, black shirt and black jacket and with his hair tussled and stubble on his face, Duchovny looks like his Hank Moody character: a burned-out, bed-hopping novelist who supplies the fornication in the title of the show.

Some of us wished that the earnest hero FBI Agent Fox Mulder had showed up.

While “Californication” allows him to display a wider range of emotions as a flawed father, a Australian disillusioned writer and a bad-boy charmer online casino who gets into ridiculously outrageous sexual misadventures casino, it’s the likable Mulder that most people remember.

Duchovny is revisiting his best known character in “The X-Files: I Want to Believe,” opening Friday.

He says that he wanted to catch up with Mulder at a different stage in the character’s life.

“The key for me to get back into this guy that I started playing in 1993 was just to allow the character to mature and grow into another phase of his life,” says the 47-year-old actor.

“It wasn’t trying to be Mulder from 1993,” he adds. “I can’t play him the same way. I walk a little slower.”

Later, at a media party in a posh Hollywood nightclub, Duchovny is there but doesn’t share a lot about the movie. He’s not the kind of actor who provides glib sound bites.

He says that he does sometimes catch “a few minutes” of “The X-Files” reruns late at night when he can’t sleep.

“It’s like watching old home movies,” he says, noting that the romantic tension between Mulder and Gillian Anderson’s Agent Dana Scully was at the core of the series.

“The X-Files” creator Chris Carter has said the plot is like one of the stand-alone paranormal mysteries that were popular during the run of the show.

Mulder and Scully, specialists in the unexplained, are dispatched to a small town where women are being abducted and a crazy clergyman (Billy Connelly) has strange visions. Mulder wants to believe. Scully, the doubter, looks for the logical explanation.

To promote the movie, Duchovny has been doing dozens of interviews. He has said that during his eight-season run on “The X-Files,” he became “creatively fatigued” and weary of the alien conspiracy mythology and the Mulder-Scully romance.

Now he appreciates the romance and sees Mulder as the valiant Don Quixote character, “a guy who was right but never won.”

Courtesy of Walt Belcher for The Tampa Tribune.

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