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On the set of The Unnatural

[DD stands on the baseball field. He is wearing shades, green sweater, black pants, sneakers, holding a microphone and addressing extras sitting in the stands.]

DD: Now you in the hat (points), you stand up and yell - yeah, just holler.

Man’s voice: Yay!

[extras laugh]

DD: OK

[DD peers through camera lens.]

PV voiceover: The X Files takes another turn with Duchovny directing his first episode [quick cuts of DD directing - basically he points to things, in one scene he is with Brian Thompson]

DD (to extras again): Everybody, Woo! (throws arm in air to motivate crowd)

[crowd cheers]

[Clip from ep: Alien w/bat & ball meets Young Dales who faints]

PV: Duchovny (Agent Mulder) wrote this coming Sunday’s mysterious tale surrounding minor league baseball in 1947.

[DD & PV on the set. DD is wearing different clothes; he points to a cactus that has 2 baseballs embedded in it; yellow police-type tape is wrapped around the cactus]

DD: My pitcher in the beginning has control problems and this cactus is like 40 yards behind the plate. [points to embedded balls] It’s 2 and 0. [smiling, clearly amused] This is how you can tell.

PV: Duchovny’s idea came after watching last year’s great homerun race between Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa ... [footage of MM & SS together] ...and reading about a minor leaguer who smashed a record number of homeruns in Roswell, the small city so often linked to UFOs

[footage of the real Roswell, NM, and UFO tourist attractions]

DD: I just thought, "Wow, he’s in Roswell, that’s odd, what if he was an alien." And then we just kind of went from there and making him black and the whole story just kind of fell into place.

[DD watching footage on monitors]

DD (to crowd again): Put your stuff away and sit down, thank you.

PV: Duchovny received a good scouting report as a rookie director from Gillian Anderson (Agent Scully)

GA (dressed in dark Scully suit, seated in a director’s chair): He wanted to learn and he was very enthusiastic about learning the details of the process and he was very calm and you wouldn’t have known that it was his first directing job.

[shots of DD directing the crew]

[DD & GA film a scene in Mulder’s apartment]

Scully (entering apt., Mulder behind her): Aliens?

PV: The X Files crew is now shooting in Los Angeles after 5 years in Vancouver.

[Mulder guides Scully to a chair facing the couch, he has his hand on her and sits her in the chair. He then crouches down in front of her and they speak in hushed tones.] {note: There are 2 people sitting on Mulder’s couch, but I don’t think they’re in the shot. Must be crew people.}

PV: Next year could be the program’s last as Duchovny’s contract is up. They’re all feeling like high school juniors here.

GA (smiling): I’m just going to keep my mouth shut and my tear ducts dry because the thought - the hint of a thought - that next year is our last season is so bittersweet.

(DD & PV are on set, approaching a coffin decorated with white flowers. There’s a cross made of flowers next to the coffin.)

PV: Perhaps there’s a clue to this year’s final episode and the fate of Fox’s contract negotiations with Duchovny on this set - a coffin.

DD: They always want to cover their bases and have me dead just in case they don’t want to pony up the dough as Letterman likes to say. [points to coffin] So here lies Fox Mulder...

PV: You don’t think you deserve more than just this?

[DD laughs]

[footage of DD & TL]

PV: All this talk of death and yet the impending birth of their first child is on the minds of Duchovny and wife, Téa Leoni.

DD: I hope I’m a good dad. It seems to me a very difficult and easy thing to do at the same time. But I hope to be good.

DD (back on the field, looking into camera, shouts softly - if that’s possible): Action, Scoreboard!

PV: If his parenting style mirrors his directorial technique, Duchovny won’t be a screamer.


April 22, 1999 CNN Showbiz Today.

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