Chris Carter deserves all the credit in the world for creating The X-Files. But he has never, ever been the series’ strongest writer. And, man, have the movies never been a particularly great venue for his creation. So maybe he should just leave his script for X-Files 3 in a drawer.

On Fox’s Television Critics Association panel, Carter admitted that the second movie was a mistake. Carter says the problem with I Want to Believe was that “We tried to do a very small movie about faith the second time out. And it was released in the middle of summer tentpole movies. It was a misstep in that way. I think [a third movie] has to be more like the first movie.” He said it had to be giant and big-budget because “that’s what X-Files fans want.” Which isn’t exactly correct. What X-Files fans want is a good story that’s true to the characters. Some of the most beloved episodes weren’t big blow-outs, they were small, well-conceived stories.

And Carter told the TCA that he’d already written a script for the third movie.

“I actually wrote a third movie, just because I was interested in the idea of where that might go,” he said. And then thought he could maybe make it work for TV. “I let my wife read the third movie, and she said ‘I think not for television,’” he concluded. It apparently isn’t affected by anything in the new series, so he could dust off that script if Fox wanted.

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Let’s hope Fox doesn’t want that. If we have the X-Files back, let’s keep it in a format where people other than Chris Carter get to do the writing.

[The Hollywood Reporter and Entertainment Weekly]


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