The X-Files is known for episodes about aliens and government conspiracies, but the main draw of the sci-fi TV show is really the powerful chemistry between its leads, David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson. However, there’s a different recurring actor on the show who met the love of his life while filming the series. Which cast member met his wife on the set of The X-Files?
‘The X-Files’, which is currently streaming on Hulu, is where actor Mitch Pileggi met his wife
In an interview with Dallas News, actor Mitch Pileggi confirmed that he met his current wife while filming the FOX show. In case you’ve forgotten, Pileggi played iconic X-Files character Walter Skinner — the Assistant Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Pileggi’s current wife — Arlene Warren — “was Gillian’s photo double on the show.”
“I met her the third season,” the actor explained. “She was usually on second unit being Gillian, but there was one episode when she played a waitress in a scene that Gillian, David, and I were doing.”
The actor who played AD Skinner told the publication that when he saw his wife onset, he asked Duchovny immediately: “Who’s that?”
“That’s Arlene,” The X-Files lead replied. “Everybody knows Arlene.”
“Well, I don’t,” Pileggi responded. He told the Dallas News: “And I swear, I said, ‘I’m going to marry her.'” So, eight months later, he did!
“I had no intention at that point of ever getting married again, but I was so thunderstruck,” Pileggi gushed about his wife. After marrying in 1997, Warren played Skinner’s assistant a couple of times on The X-Files (according to IMDb).
How did actor Mitch Pileggi get cast on ‘The X-Files’?
Since first joining the cast of The X-Files as AD Skinner in the mid-90s, Pileggi has appeared on the TV shows Medium, Dallas, American Horror Story, Supergirl, among several other projects. He was also invited back to the FOX reboot of The X-Files in 2016.
The actor explained to the Dallas News how he first got cast as Walter Skinner.
“Before Skinner, I had gone in to read for the show twice,” Pileggi shared. “They were for smaller characters.” But creator Chris Carter didn’t believe Pileggi’s shaved head was the “right look.” The X-Files cast member continued:
When I came back to read for Skinner, I had a bit of an attitude because I was a little miffed that I hadn’t gotten the parts the other times. It was exactly the attitude that Chris wanted for Walter Skinner.
That attitude indeed came in handy for the X-Files character. Skinner often butts heads with Agent Mulder for abandoning FBI protocol and chasing the more supernatural elements of cases.
Did Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny ever date?
Because the two leads on The X-Files have undeniable chemistry, many fans have wondered if the actors who played Scully and Mulder were ever together. Tragically, Anderson and Duchovny were dating other people at the time. Then in 1997, Duchovny married actress Téa Leoni, and they had two children. They divorced in 2014.
Anderson married art director Clyde Klotz in 1994, and got pregnant with her first daughter while filming the end of the first season of The X-Files. After a couple of divorces, two sons, and more relationships, Anderson is currently seeing the creator of Netflix’s The Crown, Peter Morgan.
Anderson confirmed to the Telegraph that she had “never been romantically involved with Duchovny.”
In fact, rumors swirled that the two TV actors often fought on set during the first run of The X-Files. Actor Dean Haglund, who played Langly (the Garth-looking one of the three Lone Gunmen), confirmed on Kumail Nanjiani’s podcast The X-Files Files that Anderson and Duchovny fought often onset. However, Haglund chalked that up to spending 12 to 16 hours a day together.
“The crucible of doing that show made monsters out of both of us,” Duchovny explained in an interview to Variety.
‘The X-Files’ lead castmates are friends now
It wasn’t until years after the show started — when Duchovny and Anderson were filming the movie The X-Files: I Want to Believe, that they became true friends.
“Once we got to step back, it was like, ‘Oh, wow, we really like each other,” he told Variety. “I didn’t know that was going to happen.’ The way we work together has changed. Whatever rapport we have as actors, we earned.”
Duchovny’s X-Files co-star Anderson chimed in:
Our relationship has definitely become a proper friendship over the last few years. I think we’re more on each other’s side. We’re more aware of the other’s needs, wants, concerns, and mindful to take those into consideration … under the sudden realization that we’re both in this together.