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  • From Playgirl Magazine

    Making Contact with David Duchovny
    by Jenny Higgons

    A Close Encounter With the X-Files' August Agent

    As unorthodox FBI agent Fox Mulder on *The X-Files*, David Duchovny probes unsolved cases involving paranormal phenomena. Paired up with partner Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson), they investigate ghosts, UFOs, monsters and other anomalies.

    But Duchovny's resume isn't as mysterious. Raised in New York City, 34 and single, he studied at Princeton and Yale before taking up acting. He delved into movies (*Kalifornia, Julia Has Two Lovers, The Rapture*) and the small screen (*Twin Peaks, Red Shoes*) before taking his current gig on TV's coolest show.

    Phoning one Friday night from the show's Vancouver set- calling four times in 90 minutes (twice while I was actually trying to *watch* the show) because he kept having to do a scene- the easygoing Duchovny proves that his Wonder Bread agent Mulder is, in real life, wry bred.

    PG: Let's start off talking about your Princeton days. You once said, "I was really a tight-assed king of student." Did you spend all four years with your head buried in your books?

    DD: Not completely, but I was a good student and took it really seriously. Looking back on it, I wish I'd had a little more fun. I didn't have those wild and crazy college years that people seem to try to recapture the rest of their lives. In fact, it's kind of *good* I had such a miserable time in college because I spent no time trying to recapture it. I can just move on.

    PG: Did you date a lot?

    DD: I had a girlfriend I met in December of my first year. I saw her the first day of school, and decided I *must* get to know this girl. I joined a politics class just to because she was in it, and I joined a special precept at, like, 8:30 a.m., which is really early for me, just to be in there with her. She never showed up until December, and then she asked me for my notes and I gladly gave them to her. She was my girlfriend for four years and a year after we graduated. If I'd met her a little later we'd probably have stayed together.

    PG: She was your first true love?

    DD: I think I was in love before that, but she was my first really long-term relationship.

    PG: What did you learn from it?

    DD: Never to get into another one.

    PG: You've had *some* since then, I'm sure.

    DD: Yeah. I don't know what I learned...I learned not to lie, not to cheat.

    PG: Did you learn that through lying and cheating?

    DD: That's the only way you *can* learn. You never learn anything that people tell you or from books.

    PG: What did you discover about women when you played Denise, the transvestite detective on *Twin Peaks*?

    DD: Bras with wires hurt.

    PG: They put you in an *underwire* bra?

    DD: Sure, they did. I had big tits. I was a large woman and I had a big rack, you know? They were like a loaf of bread...the kind that go straight across without any differentiation, kind of like Mrs. Doubtfire.

    PG: How did you like wearing all the other stuff that goes with being a woman?

    DD: I liked it more than I can say, and it disturbs me still.

    PG: Did you keep any clothes?

    DD: I borrowed a lot of clip-on earrings from a friend of mine and don't know if I ever returned them to her.

    PG: I bet you look lovely in them.

    DD: I look horrible. I was an unattractive woman, but I had nice legs. My sister was jealous of my legs.

    PG: Did you shave for the part?

    DD: I "Nair-ed" them.

    PG: That stuff is nasty.

    DD: No kidding...It's like burning a layer of skin off, and off comes the hair.

    PG: Why didn't you just shave?

    DD: Too much hair. A man has got hairy legs, and a razor doesn't really cut it.

    PG: How was playing a phone-sex Lothario in *Julia Has Two Lovers*?

    DD: It was a fun movie because there was no structure. It was mostly improvised and we had a crew of almost zero.

    PG: Did it tempt you to ever call a phone-sex line?

    DD: No, phone-sex doesn't really interest me.

    PG: Because it's too detached?

    DD: Yeah, it is kind of detached and...I don't know, I mean, if I *knew* the person...I'm more of a visual person. If they had *television* phone-sex, I guess that would be exciting.

    PG: How did you feel about being bare-assed in *Kalifornia*?

    DD: Exposed.

    PG: Did you feel self-conscious knowing that America would see you cheeks?

    DD: My back was turned. I didn't know they had the camera on.

    PG: You're full of it.

    DD: I am. I also was bare-assed in *The Rapture*, so I'd been bare-assed before.

    PG: Would you ever face the camera?

    DD: I would have done that.

    PG: And you wouldn't have qualms about exposing your manhood?

    DD: No. Why should I? It's just what it is. It's just a penis, you know.

    PG: There's this big horrible gasp when men show their penises in movies.

    DD: Yes, there is, and I think it's because of two things: one, of men running Hollywood, for the most part, and, I'm not sure if women are that interested in seeing men's soft penises.

    PG: Soft?

    DD: Well, you're not going to walk around with a hard-on in a movie, either.

    PG: I guess it depends on the situation.

    DD: That would never be shown in an American movie, and I guess that would be the real test-if you're willing to with a hard-on in a movie. The other thing is, on the one hand, it means nothing, why not show it? On the other hand, who needs to see it? Why do you need to see a penis? Why do you need to see pubic hair? It's not a big deal for me to either see it or show it. Pubic hair does not turn me on. Penises, when they're soft, they're kind of ridiculous things, anyway, you know?

    PG: Yes, especially if they're uncircumcised-they look like turtles.

    DD: Well, I don't want to cast aspersions on our Gentile brothers.

    PG: Right...you're half Scottish and half Jewish.

    DD: Yeah, so don't ask me for money.

    PG: What kind of a child do a Scottish mother and a Jewish father produce?

    DD: You get kind of that Protestant work ethic combined with Jewish guilt and introspection. So you get someone to go out and do a lot of stuff and change the world, but he's too busy being depressed and sitting and thinking about it.

    PG: So far Scully and Mulder's relationship has been strictly platonic. Does the show work better that way?

    DD: Yes, just because it's so easy to jump into bed. Who needs to see that? That happens on every show. What's so hard about having sex? It's the same thing as nudity...big deal. It's better to have two people who are actually interested in each other beyond that. The easiest thing in the world is to be attracted to somebody. It's harder to actually live with them and work with them. And that's a fact, Jack.

    PG: Can you see Mulder and Scully get involved romantically?

    DD: To me, that would be like the final show, when the show is going off the air and everybody was giving up, and they decided to let Mulder and Scully have sex with one another.

    PG: But they do sometimes glance at each other in a kind of sexual way.

    DD: Yeah, I think that's more realistic.

    PG: Do you know how bizarre it is to be watching a TV show and have the star of the show call?

    DD: It doesn't happen all the time? I make about 100,000 random phones calls Friday nights at nine. I say, "Hi, this is David Duchovny...Mulder on *The X-Files*. Are you watching the show? Would you do me a favor? Will you turn it on now? Here's my number, give me a call afterwards and let me know how I'm doin'," like Ed Koch used to do.

    PG: What TV show do *you* like to watch?

    DD: When I get home at night usually the only thing on is the infomercial where you spraypaint people's heads and reruns of *Star Trek*.

    PG: Are you a Trekkie?

    DD: Oh, yeah, for years. I loved the first one. I've never watched *The Next Generation*.

    PG: So you've been involved in science-fiction stuff for a long time now.

    DD: Well, yeah. I don't really think of *The X-Files* as being anything like *Star Trek*, actually. Science fiction is supposed to parallel the real world, and you're supposed to draw morals from that world and apply them to this world. It's like an allegory. But our show is supposedly based on the *real* world, so it's not like they're not parallel worlds, it's more like where the two worlds intersect. So it's a really different feel. I like to think that we're a little more realistic.

    PG: Do you think there may be other forms of life around?

    DD: I think it's possible.

    PG: But why don't these things ever land in Times Square?

    DD: I hate to do the thinking for the aliens. I wouldn't want to get inside their heads, but I imagine, for whatever reason, they like to do their work in secret.

    PG: Does the infamous casting couch really exist in Hollywood?

    DD: It exists in every walk of life. It just happens to be called a "casting couch" in Hollywood. People have been sleeping with one another to get ahead since time began, since Paris judged Helen of Troy. It's no big deal and it's not a shock. People should just get over it.

    PG: What do you think of the naked butts on *NYPD Blue*?

    DD: That's fine, why not? What's wrong with an ass?

    PG: You've shown yours.

    DD: That's right. *I* don't want to show my ass past a certain age because I don't want to look at it, and I certainly wouldn't subject anybody *else* to it. So while it's still young and relatively nice, I think I'll show it as much as I can.

    PG: So now that we know you're going to show your ass, it might open up some new roles for you.

    DD: No, I think most people would show their ass. But most of the roles I did before *The X-Files* were kind of sexually oriented. In fact, one of the things I like about *The X-Files* is that it's different for me in that I'm not really that interested in women or in sex. It's a different muscle to flex.

    PG: How do you like being famous?

    DD: Sometimes it's nice that people acknowledge your hard work, and sometimes it's a pain in the ass that you can't just sit around and watch people, because all of a sudden you become the person who's being watched. For the most part, it sucks. At first, you're like, *Wow, people know who I am, that's interesting.* And then it's, *Wow, people know who I am, let me go home and sit alone.* People are kind of picking you apart and comparing you to their image of you. And when you become known on a television show, they identify you with your character rather than if you were a movie actor and had different characters. So I'm a little fed up with people saying, "Oh, look, it's Mulder," or something like that. I'm not fucking Mulder, you know?

    PG: You want to scream, "My name's *David.*"

    DD: Right. Or they say, "Are you anything like Mulder? Do you believe?" And I'm like, "Look, what do you *think*? I'm an *actor*? Think about it. Does it matter? Who cares? If I told you I did believe, would it matter to you enjoyment of the show?"

    PG: What's your favorite part of a woman?

    DD: The part like right where the back of the upper thigh turns into the rear end. It's soft. It's fragrant. It's got everything you need. You could just build a house there and be happy.

    PG: Well, I don't what to take up the rest of your break time, but thanks so much for calling me back all those times.

    DD: Ok, finish watching the episode. At the end [of the article] write,"...and David was just wonderful in the show."

    PG: That goes without saying. David was also a wonderful interview subject.

    DD: Well, yeah, you're lucky you got me after my medication.

    PG: A little Prozac never hurt, huh?

    DD: Yeah.


    Higgons, Jenny. "Making Contact with David Duchovny." Playgirl Magazine.
    Article found on David Duchovny's Home Page (fan site)
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