X-Files fans, rejoice: Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully might not have solved their final mystery yet.
Entertainment Weekly has confirmed that FOX is considering an X-Files reboot, with network CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman reporting that series creator Chris Carter and co-stars Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny are interested in reprising their roles. (If you somehow missed out, the show features the two leads as FBI agents assigned to investigate unsolvable crimes, which usually have paranormal explanations.)
"It's true that we've had some conversations on X-Files," Newman told Entertainment Weekly. "We're hopeful of being able to bring that back at some point. We've maintained good relationships with Chris, David and Gillian. We're very hopeful, but it's hard. The actors are very busy. They have a lot going on. Chris has a lot on his plate, so it's just trying to carve out the time."
The X-Files has essentially been dead since the show's ninth season finale in 2002, by which point the show had slunk into ratings oblivion. An attempt to revive the franchise in 2008 in the form of a second feature resulted in a box-office bomb that fans generally wish had never happened. So the news that FOX is seriously considering bringing the show back is kind of a revelation:
Unfortunately, there are a few caveats: Anderson is currently starring in NBC's Hannibal as the eponymous cannibal's psychiatrist, while Duchovny will appear in an upcoming NBC event series Aquarius. Both actors would need to wrestle free of their contractual obligations to NBC before they would be ready to star in an X-Files reboot.
Assuming it moves forward, there are plenty of interesting questions. The series' basic mythology — a massive shadow government conspiracy to cover up Earth's secret capitulation to extraterrestrial colonizers — was never actually resolved. By the time the show concluded, so-called alien "super soldiers" had managed to infiltrate high-level government posts, sending Mulder and Scully into hiding in a cliffhanger ending. The subsequent 2008 movie featured them in their post-FBI careers, making it a little unclear just how hard their enemies had really been looking for them. If it really is a hard reboot, maybe none of it matters.
Is alien colonization still around the corner? Why aren't Mulder and Scully six feet under? Are they still bad at their jobs? Who's been working the X-Files in their absence? And is Mulder still addicted to porn?
This is The X-Files we're talking about, so a little ambiguity is probably a good thing. Theorize away, conspiracy aficionados. We might just get lucky on this one.