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The Late Show with David Letterman
October 13, 1997

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David Letterman: Our first guest is Agent Fox Mulder on the very popular show The X-Files and he stars in a new film entitled Playing God that opens Oct. 17. Here he is two-time Emmy nominee David Duchovny. Dave....

[David enters]

DL: Howya doin' buddy? Welcome to the show, thanks for being here.

David Duchovny: Thank you...but about that introduction, after the Emmys, I don't think it's fair to still call me a nominee. I think you have to introduce me as an Emmy loser.

DL: Oh no, I don't think so. Just to be nominated is a thrill enough.

DD: Well my mother used to introduce me as my son the actor, and now she introduces me as my son, the Emmy loser.

DL: Noooo, that's not true. But your co star, didn't she win the Emmy?

DD: She did indeed. Gillian Anderson won a big Emmy.

DL: Yah, how does that work now on the set?

DD: Well, we're all very happy and if I manage not to sit on it, it doesn't hurt too badly.

DL: I keep hearing that you're leaving the show, that if they don't move to LA, you're going to walk, one of those things. It's probably not true, isn't it?

DD: No, it is true actually.

[audience, DL laugh. DD smiles]

DL: They do the show in Vancouver.

DD: They do the show in Vancouver but.....

DL: Beautiful city.

DD: It is. And I know that you love Vancouver, but my wife lives in Los Angeles. I realize I'm in the minority, but I would like to live with my wife.

[DL laughs]

DD: I know everyone in America is saying "Are you crazy? You live 2,000 miles away from your wife, you got it made, but....."

DL: How long have you been married?

DD: Five months now.

DL: Congratulations. You're still a newlywed [audience applauds] and you're wife of course.....

DD: My wife is Téa Leoni. We got married here in New York.

DL: Oh right here in New York?

DD: Yeah, we got married at Grace Church School which is where I went to school and where my mother teaches now. They wouldn't allow us to get married in the church actually and at first I thought it's because I'm half Jewish and it's an Episcopal church and then I realized it's because I'm on a Fox show.

[DL, audience big laugh]

DL: Really? Wow.

DD: Yeah, can you imagine that?

DL: Well, it kinda all makes sense now.

DD: And then I thought it was because Téa's divorced probably has something to do with it but they let us get married in the church yard because she's on an NBC show.

DL: How do you like being married?

DD: I love it.

DL: So are you going to get the show moved to Los Angeles?

DD: I hope so. I mean it's nothing against Vancouver, we've got a great crew.....

DL: We're working on a deal right now with the city council up there where if you take your show to LA, we're thinking of taking this show to Vancouver.

DD: Uh... [gestures, hand to mouth. Audience hoots and geers]

DL: Well, you're going with us [to audience].

[cheers, applause]

DD: If you take this show to Vancouver, I ain't goin'. I'm stayin' there.

DL: And you could be on every night.

DD: I'll just come and be your buddy, and speaking of which, I have something I want to talk to you about [reaches with some difficulty into trouser pocket for paper]

DL: Everybody does. Are you selling popcorn?

DD: You know, I just reached the age limit where I can't do that anymore. I think it's 35, isn't it?

DL: Where you can't what? Sell popcorn? [laughing]

DD: [laughing] I tried. I was making a little extra cash up until a couple of years ago.

DL: Really? [laughing hard]

DD: I thought it was a height limit, but it's actually an age limit. This is a letter I got from an actual person out there. And it says: Dear Mr. Duchovny, Let me get this out of the way first. I'm a fan of the X-Files and I enjoy your performances as Mulder but the last time you were on the Late Show with David Letterman, Paul Schaeffer and the CBS Orchestra played the Rolling Stones song Bitch while you were walking out.

[audience laughs]

Paul Schaffer: I think I remember that.

DD: Were you aware of this, he wants to know. I don't know if you asked them to play it because you really liked that song.

DL: The writer likes that song.

DD: [holds letter up to DL and points] He says "I do." Because he wants me to know about him.

DL: And you may have yet something else in common. This letter has stalker written all over it.

DD: [laughing, turning over letter] It's a really smart idea for me to be reading it out loud, isn't it?

DL: You'll rue this.

DD: [peering out] It's a very dark theatre too isn't it. [continues reading] Or. This is where it gets scary. "Or if he is trying to insult you or even worse, trying to subliminally tell you you're his bitch."

[oohs, laughter, applause]

DL: Man, I don't know. PS: I like three actually. [DD laughs]

DL: We'll consider this and come right back with David Duchovny.

[band plays Bitch]

DD: I just can't believe that you would play that song again.

DL: I had nothing to do with it. Oh is that it right there?

PS: You bitch.

DD: I think that maybe Paul is saying I'm his bitch. [laughter] And if I had a preference I'd rather be your bitch [turning to DL] than yours.

PS: Oh, thanks a lot. After all we've been through.

DL: This is why every morning I get out of bed with a smile on my face.

[DD laughs]

DL: You know I saw Playing God the other day. What a lovely piece of work this is. It looks to me you have a huge career as your big time movie star.

DD: Thank you. DL; You're very appealing in that role. I mean to see you in a different role and you're still very good in it.

DD: That's very nice of you to say.

DL: The film is very rugged though isn't it. It's grisly and ugly.

DD: [laughs] Well, you can talk to our D.P. about that. It was... when you're a doctor you kind of have to...if you're making an omlette you've gotta crack open some eggs, you've gotta open some bodies if you're going to be a surgeon. And I watched a couple of brain surgeries to research it.

DL: Oh you actually went out and .....

DD: I didn't go out, I actually went to a hospital and watched the brain surgery there.

DL: [laughing hard] I thought you were going to say no, they brought him over to the place.

DD: [overlapping DL's talking].....oh there's one over there, do you mind if I watch?

DL: What's it like when you're there as the observer, the interloper and these guys are doing their job?

DD: Well it's very interesting what you learn when you watch a brain surgery. For instance, you know how doctor's always keep their hands up here, that's because anything below the waist is not sterile. That's a good lesson for everybody. [laughter]

DL: [mock shrugs, grimaces] To each his own, sure.

DD: The other thing that's very strange is that it's kinda mundane to the. I don't know if brain surgery is ever mundane, but they've done it before, we hope. And they kinda talked to me because I'm the new wildcard and the feeling for me is kinda like when I'm in the cockpit of a plane and the pilot has said, "Come watch the landing." And he's like [pantomimes pilot tilting steering wheel] "So what can we expect this year on the X-Files." And I don't want to talk to them at all. It's like, "Land the plane. and then we'll talk." And this guy's got this guy's head....like a cartoon, you think, like the saw and the spoon.[laughter] And that's actually how it happens, on ER and stuff like that it's totally unrealistic. It's a saw and a spoon.

DL: Which brings up a silly question that comes up all the time in the office, if you're the one having brain surgery and you have two choices, the brain surgeon who is tired, or a brain surgeon who is angry which of those would you like doing it.

DD: I just think you want the guy without the bifocals. You want the guy who's not going like this [mimes surgeon operating, pulling head back and forth to focus]

[laughter]

DL: But factor into that he's sleepy or he's angry. Now what do you want?

DD: An angry, bespectacled brain surgeon. You want to run, if you have the capacity at that point.

DL: It seems like these days films are full of really bizarre pyschopathic idiots.Just wackos, just goofballs. [DD laughs] And this guy is like Satan incarnate, isn't he?

DD: Well, I think it's a great role for Timothy because he's well known for being able to portay really sensitive men with a lot of feeling.

DL: It's no Herbie the Lovebug or whatever it is his father used to do.

DD: No it's not Herbie the Lovebug. [DD, DL both break out in laughter] I think.....

DL: Well, there's a little Herbie in this.

DD: I glanced at his script once and I'll have to admit I did see "Give it a little Herbie the Lovebug." I hate to give away another actor's secrets.

DL: And the love interest in this. What a lovely woman.

DD: Angeline Jolie.

DL: Let's take a look at this. It opens...

DD: It opens Friday. And should I.....I play a drug-addicted surgeon whose lost his license and is now wandering aimlessly through life and comes into contact with a gangster who needs a personl physician.

DL: Not a bad guy, but a guy who's made a mistake or two.

DD: Me. The gangster is a bad guy.

[plays clip "Just trying to plan my day" scene.]

DL: Yes sir, Playing God.

DD: You know.....

DL: Good job.

DD: Disney is doing the film. It doesn't seem like a Disney film. At first it was Columbia and they very impolitely withdrew financing a week before we began shooting.

DL: Those guys are sissies.

DD: This is a Columbia broadcasting.....

DL: Not affiliated, .....with the school of broadcasting

DD: [laughing hard] school of broadcasting

DL: The important thing is the thing got made and it's very, very entertaining. And if I were you I'd be very excited. And it opens Oct. 17. Thank you David.


The Late Show with David Letterman October 3, 1997.
Transcribed by someone at the David Duchovny Testosterone Brigade.

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