Gillian Anderson at the LA X-Files Convention

by Autumn Tysko

The following report details Gillian Anderson's appearance at the Los Angeles X-Files convention in January of 1996. It appears here with the permission of the author.
Right before Gillian Anderson came out, to torment us a bit with more wait they played a video compilation of scenes highlighting her talents from: the pilot (initial meeting), Ice (the joint examination), Beyond the Sea (hotel room), Irresistible (you know what scene [g]), The Blessing Way (metal detector scene), War of the Coprophages (7-11 scene), 2shy (fight sequence).

GA then emerged to an astounding amount of paparazzi -- you would not believe the press there; the flashes were blinding. She was genuinely overcome with emotion at the tremendous crowd reaction to her appearance and stood smiling and laughing looking stunned and slightly teary eyed. She was wearing black slacks, black shoes with those very high heels, a navy long-sleeved blouse that buttoned up the front with large gold buttons, and glasses (more oval than Scully's). I know I won't get the inflection right in typed words, but suffice to say there was much fun and laughter during her whole appearance. She has good comic timing and was quite funny.

Her first words were, "Holy cow! I have no idea what to say right now! It's unbelievable. I'm completely verklempt." After more screams she said, "You know, I wanted to prepare about 10-15 minutes of something extremely witty and charming, and honestly, if I had, I wouldn't remember it right now." So she decided to just take questions "if anyone had any" (LOL!) and then laughed as a huge crowd rushed to stand in line (including yours truly).

The first question was "what was it like to eat that bug?" She told the story of The Enigma eating all the bugs and how she thought after seeing him do that she felt she should at least try to put one in her mouth. Then she came clean and said, "I didn't actually eat it -- sorry!" Despite all the other stories, we finally got the truth -- she put them in her mouth then spit them out. (Actually you see David doing it too in the blooper real).

In answer to what was the most difficult part of her job, she said the long hours and the dialogue -- the long words and complex lines she has to deliver constantly (you know that can't be easy).

Much to the crowd's delight the next girl told her that she had the "greatest hair" (so there, TV Guide!) She also asked if she'd made any films ("a few very small ones that never even made it to video"). She wants to do something over the next hiatus. The next girl asked about "what was it like to do that Rolling Stone picture with David" to which Gillian replied, "She means what was it like to have my naked breast against his chest," then proceeded to tease the cheering crowd with, "It was fun! David's got very soft skin. He's very fit. And we had a very hard time that day... it ... it was work."

The next person said, "Oh, my God, I'm so nervous," and got a "me too" reply. She asked if GA knew about her online "brigade." GA said yes, and that she thought it was great, especially when she was pregnant and got so much support from the fan clubs and that she likes the support that she gets from her brigade -- both men and women.

She was asked her middle name. "Leigh".

The next guy that got up mentioned her glasses, that she wasn't wearing Scully's glasses and that we didn't see Scully in her glasses enough. To which she replied, "No, these aren't hers, these are mine. But if Scully were here she wouldn't be wearing them, because she only wears them at her computer...and sometime she doesn't wear them at her computer and sometimes she wears them when she's reading ... and sometimes she doesn't wear them when she's reading.... But you know, probably she wouldn't be wearing them up here."

The next question was the Bambi question (Bambi was not a popular character this weekend and was the butt of many jokes [G]). The girl asked, "Uh, last week -- could you tell us about Bambi?"

GA: "What exactly would you like to know?" The girl asked if she was actually trying to convey that Scully was jealous or were we all trying to read too much into it.

GA:"I think that because of how intimately and intensely Scully and Mulder work together, that anytime there is anybody that comes up around the other character it causes a little bit of tension. Needless to say, uh, Bambi caused a little bit of tension." (This exchange was real funny).

The next guy asked her what type of film she'd like to do during her hiatus -- what genre, etc. "I don't have any particular thing planned. It would be nice to play a character that is very different than Scully, and hopefully I will get that chance to do that. The things that I'm interested in are -- a wide range of things. I love period movies, I love Pulp Fiction, I love smaller films, I love foreign films, and I love independent films. But, you know, anything that is well written and really speaks to me."

At this point something really funny happened. Doug "Tooms" Hutchison had just shown up at the convention (as the Fire star Mark Sheppard had, and the Eve twins were also there Sunday), and he got to the mike to ask a question as a dweeby alter-ego: "Hello, Ms. Anderson." (Many screams and laughter from all, GA included -- she was cracking up with the audience.)

"My name is Norbert Weiner, and I'm a big fan of yours and of the program The X-Files. I would like to thank you for being here today, and my question is as follows. During the first season, you did a particular episode called Squeeze. It happens to personally be my favorite episode and I was just wondering, Ms. Anderson, there was a very talented young actor in that particular episode by the name of Doug Hutchison. Quite good looking young fellow, too. My question for you, Ms. Anderson, is in the final scene in the bathroom when Doug Hutchinson as this character Tooms was on top of you -- what was that like? I would only like to guess that it was the most thrilling experience of your life." (She is just losing it at this point and can't really answer). "I'm a little nervous, too."

GA: "Let me tell you all a little about Doug Hutchison. I hope he's not here right now. Um, no."

DH: "No I don't think he's here either -- I looked for him, but...."

GA: "Uh, I have no -- I'd love to tell a little story about... Um, it was my birthday...."

DH: "Yes."

GA: "Um. You know, he was a great guy." (One senses the story might be a bit risqué.)

DH: "I thought as much."

GA: "He was a sweetheart, you know, and it was really sad to have him die so (gesturing) -- you know ... blood..."

DH: "Rumor has it your blouse kept popping open. Your brassiere was exposed. I just heard that, I don't know."

GA: "Uh, that's very possible. I'm trying to remember that particular night... Yeah, you know, there's a lot of stunts that are involved and it is very technical when you're doing that kind of ... (looking toward audience)".

DH: "Uh, I'm over here Ms. Anderson; I didn't go nowhere."

GA: "When you're doing that kind of stunt there are a lot of other people around, and you hit each other in a certain way, and it's not a very intimate experience."

DH: "Oh, right. Well, I do appreciate you answering my question and welcome to lovely downtown Burbank, and anytime you are in the area again, Ms. Anderson, if you'd like, I would love to take you out for some liver."

GA: "Thank you. What a day!"

The next guy with a question says, "And I've got to follow that!" then asked how she got talked into doing the Kevin & Bean Christmas album and who wrote it. She said that "they wrote it, and we were shooting in a train station somewhere up in Vancouver, and I remember them there in their shorts in very cold weather, and we sat in the back in these pews. Pews? Why would there be pews in a train station? -- Long seats, and we sat back there and did this interview that they had written, and the point was too be as 'actorly' as possible. I mean, hopefully it's an odd tape then."

Q: "It was different hearing you say 'It's reindeer crap'".

GA: "It was basically a little sketch. Personally, I wish we had taken it a little bit more seriously and not joked around as much as we had with it, but that's beside the point."

The next question was, "How are you handling all this (gestures to audience) -- people adoring you everyone yelling 'I love you'? Is it, like, different for you?"

GA looks back at audience. "I guess so".

He continues, "I mean when you are filming are there just drones of people all around you?"

GA:"No, no, there's not. Well, sometimes there are; it depends on where we are. If we shoot in the studio it's pretty secure and no one is really allowed in, but in neighborhoods, which we often do, there's usually a crowd of people around standing in the middle of the street."

Q:"Do you get used to it?"

GA:"Uh...this is a little hard to get used to. I'm shaking in my boots a little bit. But, it is, you know, I mean -- cool!"

The next question dealt with the fact that Mulder and Scully are supposed to be equal partners, but it often seems like it is Mulder who gets to do most of the fighting, etc.(references scene in Die Hand where Mulder fights someone, but she gets taken out by a bookcase) and he wondered if she found that equal treatment.

GA: "That's interesting, coming from a man. I think that the character of Scully has made so many strides forward in the nature of women on television [applause] that it is hard to bring up any of those issues, but certainly there are situations where, you know, Mulder kills the bad guy more often or Scully can't ... (referring to 2shy) that was one of the first scenes where was actually see Scully beat the sh..(covers mouth)... beat somebody up. So, that stuff comes up every once in a while, but the writers are trying so hard to develop a great script, something that flows, and that builds and builds and builds, and sometimes it is necessary for those things to take place, for both of us to be knocked down at the same time in order to carry the through line of the script out. I mean there are some. In the beginning it was a bit different -- there were more times when Scully had to walk three paces behind Mulder and stuff like that. It doesn't really happen anymore as much, so I don't really find it a big issue."

Q:"How do you feel about David having more publicity, such as being on Letterman and Leno and your being on a somewhat less ... (drowned out by crowd booing)."

GA:"You better get out of here fast (much applause). I'm sorry, I didn't mean to -- you can stay here. Well, hmm, how to answer that question. You know, David has been in this business for a lot longer than I have. He was around for almost ten years before I was, or five years, or something longer than I was. And, um, he's done quite a few features and he's a man. It's true. A spade's a spade -- you know what I mean. So it's natural for one character at a time to get more attention than another. On ensemble shows that becomes more difficult when everyone is working just as hard and one actor is getting all the attention and the others aren't. But I was talking to a reporter this morning for an interview, you might like to know, and he was asking me 'Was that David's time and it is now your time?' and that might be so. I don't know; I mean David has had his fair share of coverage and stuff and maybe that will happen to me." (Much applause.)

The next question was along the lines of, "How does it feel to be part of such a successful TV show, and all the fans."

GA:"I don't think I still get it -- I don't think it is going to hit me actually until sometime next year. When I first starting auditioning for the show, I didn't understand what the odds were for a show to get picked up. I thought that all shows were picked up. I didn't watch television very much -- I didn't know what a season was, you know, I didn't know that some show aired new shows then they aired old shows for a while and then they started airing new shows again. I didn't understand any of that stuff; I was completely naive about that, and for somebody who did my business you'd think I'd know. if you don't know, it's OK, but I just didn't know. So, uh, coming in on it, I kinda expected it to be picked up and I expected it to run for a couple of years. The odds were that that wasn't going to happen, and the odds certainly were that this was not going to happen. I mean it's been a shock for everybody, for Chris, for David, for everybody on the crew. I mean the crew that works on the show is so happy to be a part of something that is so successful and so well respected and liked; they're all just tickled to death about it. [At this point she looks away from the questioner at the side of the stage and towards the audience.] I guess I could talk to you guys, too, couldn't I? So, I don't know what I was saying ... I just saw you all again [laughter]. I guess that answers your question -- or somebody's question."

Q: "We do have to say it is one of the most outstanding shows in the history of television." (Much cheering.) "I'd like to agree you could kill more on the show."

GA: "I could kill more on the show?" (Someone from the audience yells "Yeah, get Bambi!" to laughter.)

Q: "Well, you know, with Mulder killing five times and you killing once." (At this point, as I was near the questioner, I corrected the poor misguided thing with, "Twice." Gillian smiled at me and the crowd laughed.)

GA: "I think that what is expressed, in all fairness here, isn't killing. Maybe if I, like, beat people up more often; but I don't exactly kill them. I mean, if they're really really bad guys, maybe I could kill them; it would be nice to do a few more stunts more often and kill people more often (laughs). Thank you.

Q: "How did it feel to have been a punk?"

GA: "Uuhhhhhh. You know that was something that I needed to go through at the time. [Someone in the crowd yells, "How long?"] How long was I that way? I guess it started when I was 15 and went on until I was 21. Uh, I needed -- well it is still a part of me -- I mean, you know, what it was at the time was an expression of -- an attempt at expressing feelings and, um, you know, it was a very angry phase that I went through and it served me at the time. It was something that I needed to go through, uh, and it gave me a sense of self -- of who I was, and I started to make opinions about how I wanted to dress and what I believed in and what kind of music I wanted to listen to, and I think on the whole it made me a more independent and a stronger person. Even though it was a crutch, so to speak, at times. I'm talking about mohawks, combat boots, swearing at people on the street. [Some cheers from audience.] Why is that so appealing to you? Um, now I can't do that anymore -- anyway, it is always something that is inside me, and once in a while I'll put on a Circle Jerks album or something. [Someone yells, "What is your favorite band?"] Right now? ["Then."] Then? Lords of the New Church. What about now? Gosh, I don't know. I like all different kinds of music. I love blues, I love jazz, I love Alanis Morrisette. I love all kinds of stuff."

Q:"Hi. I was just wondering what it was like for you the morning you woke up and realized your face is on everything - pictures, posters, even billboards around here."

GA: "I don't know. Honestly, I've been asked that question a lot -- not specifically that way, but I don't think that I really have thought about it because I think I'm afraid that if I really think about it that I'll die or have a nervous breakdown or something, so I don't really think about it. You don't want to know what I'm thinking about then [said jokingly to much laughter]. So, I don't know. It has been a nice slow transition being up in Vancouver and, you know, I think being down here it would have hit a lot harder and been a lot harder to deal with. Uh, it's great, you know. I honestly don't even know what to say about it -- I'm kind of numb to it all."

Q: "Thank you. I think you're a really great actress and I'm sure you'll be around for a long time." (Much cheering)

GA: "Thank you."

Q: "What do you think Scully's dog should be named?"

GA:"There were two names that I came up for it. One was Clyde -- but that's my husband's name, so.... The other was Yappi. [Cheering] Which do you like?"

Q: "I prefer Yappi."

GA: "You like Yappi? That's the most obvious one, I would have thought."

Q: "I think I speak for all the women here when I say that your character Scully is a real role model for all women [much applause] and I wanted to ask you if you get to take Piper with you, like today, and what it's like to have her on the set with you if you can?"

GA: "Sure, thank you. I do get to bring Piper with me everyday; that's something I'm incredibly blessed to be able to do. What I usually do, if I have to leave really early in the morning is I'll -- she'll be at home with the nanny, and then I'll have somebody come and pick them up like around maybe 2 hours before lunch and then she'll spend the rest of the day with me. And then, or usually later on in the week, if I have to go to work much later she'll come with me at the beginning and then I send her home early so she can go to bed. And she's there entertaining everybody. She's the most amazing little girl and she's really -- I really miss her right now -- she's really strong and she loves to be on set. She loves everybody. What's funny is that on the Friday nights that I have to work really late and she's at home with the nanny and the show's on, she'll like walk up to the TV and point to me and start to cry. She's changed my life and, I mean, I honestly don't know how women -- I mean, I went back to work ten days after I gave birth, but most women have to go back financially within three months of a baby. I don't understand how somebody can go through that and not be near that child for 8-10 hours a day at that period of the child's development, and I feel for everybody who has ever had to do that and wish it weren't so."

Q(This one is mine): "You've talked a little bit about stunts. Do you do your own stunts besides running in the heels?" [Laughter]

GA: "Um, it's funny, I did a lot -- a lot more -- not all of them, but I did a lot more before I had Piper. When you get pregnant and your body changes and your knees get all out of joint and stuff. I came back and I didn't feel, you know -- I wasn't walking straight, I wasn't doing anything right, and this was after I had Piper. It took a long time for my body to heal. And, um, so it didn't feel safe to do any kind of jumping or -- I'll remember shortly -- I can't remember what episode it was -- whether it was.... No, it was one episode where all I had to do was just, um -- oh, it was the one where -- you could probably tell me better than I know -- where a bullet just grazes my head [she points to that poor abused temple]."

Me (joking): "That's almost all of them." [Laughter.]

GA: "What? It's one where I'm in my apartment and a bullet just grazes my head and I fall to the floor. [I'm guessing she is referring to Anasazi] And it was just after I had Piper and I remember saying, 'You know could you put pillows down there?' And, 'You know, I don't want to do that anymore - I've already done that three times.' And before I'd be like, 'Yeah, go!' There was one time which is an interesting bit of whatever -- um -- when I -- what episode? It was the one with that salamander hand -- I'm sounding southern now, 'the salamander hand' -- what episode was that?"

Me: Young at Heart.

GA:"No, that's not it. Though you're right; that was the one with the salamander hand. -- The one where I get shot in the hotel."

Me: "That's it." GA [slightly confused, as crowd is responding]: Alright. [Laughing.] It's a long life, honey. Um, yes, Young at Heart. So, I was shot in the hallway and I had protective vest on. I had hip pads on, and butt pads, and chest pads, and back pads, and I was supposed to be shot and they wanted to see my face -- they wanted to see that it was me that was flying backwards. So what I had to do, which was part of the stunt, is out of nowhere just like throw myself back off my feet on to my back on to the floor -- we had to get into the rhythm of it and the shooting of it. I guess it was what I needed to do. So I did that, you know, quite a few times, and you know I had a couple bruises, and they were also shooting from a balcony up top so they really needed to see my face. So we did like take after take after take and, um, that was fine, but what I didn't know at the time which, I learned a couple of months later, is that I was pregnant at the time, um, you know. So when I actually put that together, which might have been months later, it was just kinda like 'Whoaa, is that ever weird.' I mean, I had no idea."

Me: "We're all glad everything turned out okay."

GA: "Me too -- thank you."

Q: "We've all heard about the long tapings that you have to do, and I was wondering which episode was the hardest or which took the longest?"

GA:"I don't know which episode. You know, we shoot an episode in 8 days and, um, once in a while -- I think it's only happened maybe two or three times where they've actually from the get-go said, 'This episode is going to take longer; we have to have a 9 day shoot.' But there is a whole other -- our film unit is called first unit, and it is the main unit and that's what shoots the show in the 8 day episode, but we also have a full second unit that shoots all of the shots of people's feet walking and, um -- you know, I have a hand double so that if there is a close up of me picking up a piece of paper that we don't want to waste the time on in a regular shooting they shoot it in second unit. That's a whole other unit - it's got the same amount of cameras, the same amount of people -- you know, it's a big deal -- and usually I think what happens is that it takes them about a week and a half to two weeks to prep a show -- um, going through finding the location, where they want to shoot, what actors they are thinking about, how they want to do a particular stunt, how they want to do a particular special effect, how they're going to build this and that -- it is very complicated. This is them prepping and preparing the show. And then after the 8 days of main unit shooting that David and I are involved in, there's sometimes up to 5, sometimes 6, days of second unit shooting 12 to 16 hour days just to get all those other shots. So we say it takes us 8 days to shoot an episode, but it takes a lot more than that. Very often what will happen is David and I -- it doesn't happen that often, but David and I will be shooting something for the show for the 8 day episode that we are working on right now, then in the morning or the afternoon we'll go off to second unit to shoot something for the episode that we just shot that we didn't get, and then maybe later on in the afternoon after shooting the show we are doing right now we'll go back to a corner of the stage and shoot some -- an extra scene that's been written because a show wasn't long enough to air on television so Chris has written a little extra scene to shove in here and there. And so we shoot something that was from like three episodes ago and that can get very confusing so -- God, I talk a lot -- it takes a lot of time."

Q: "Before I ask my question -- someone else said that your character, Scully, was a great role model, but you as a person are also a great role model. [Applause.] She just asked what the hardest episode was to deal with so I'm going to ask what was the funnest stuff to do."

GA: "Wow, um, I guess one way or another Ice was one of the funnest. It was one of the first fun shows that we did. It was hard work, and that whole thing about paranoia in there; it was just an excellent show to work on. And then came Humbug.' [Much applause -- Darin Morgan shows were easily the crowd favorites that weekend.] Darin Morgan scripts are, um -- you know, he's new for us, or relatively new, but you know it's great after working on these heavy-duty serious episodes to, once in a while, have these whacked out episodes come along. It's been consecutive Darin shows -- Humbug, then Clyde Bruckman's Final Repose, then War of the Coprophages that's been a lot of fun. You know, normally the shows -- there's a lot of humor on the set amongst the crew and amongst David and I. We goof around a lot, so there's a light-heartedness that takes place; it's not all dark and dreary. But when the scripts are humorous, it give us an opportunity to really have fun and make fun of, um -- it's a treat".

Q: "I've read in many magazines that you're the actual believer and David's the skeptic -- could you explain that to us?"

GA: "Well, I'm not sure if David's necessarily a skeptic. I think that he has more reservations about believing than I do. I just -- it's not like I'm a believer- BELIEVER-believer, I just have always have had a fascination in paranormal like subjects. I've always been fascinated by ESP and by psychokinesis and the whole subject of aliens and life on other planets. It is just something that I have been fascinated by. It's not something that I've sought out. I've haven't gone out and read books on it, I just find it fascinating and so, I guess because of that fascination, I've developed some sort of, I guess, desire to believe in, or understanding of that subject manner. I mean, I've had many experiences in my life -- not paranormal experiences -- as I'm sure many people have, where you think, you know, 'God, that was a miracle that I just didn't get hit by that bus.' Or when you say something at the same time as somebody else three times in a row -- you know, that kind of stuff that, whatever that is, it's fascinating -- it makes you think. Or when somebody in your family is near death and they come back to life -- I mean all that stuff. It's life -- it's fascinating stuff that happens all the time, and I think that if we pay attention to that stuff, and what I'm talking about is more on a spiritual than a paranormal level -- I'm not talking about the evil stuff -- that stuff doesn't attract me so much, but just that the -- I guess, just the things that we have to be grateful for in life, and how many times during a day we are reminded of that and pay attention to that. And I think that this whole craze of aliens and angels and stuff is people reaching out there and wanting to feel better, and for the pain to go away, and that's the stuff that is fascinating about it. I also think about it -- in my mind, the odds that there is life on other planets is greater than there not being life on other planets. That's just in my head."

The next question was a real odd method actor type question asking her if there was ever a time when she was doing a scene if there was ever a time that "Gillian is gone and Dana is there and she is terrified." (Hey, we had to have one of these -- it is LA.) [GA looked a bit perplexed.]

GA: "Uh, I don't know when that has ever actually taken place. There's always the safety of, like, 70 people around you, um, that you know that you are safe... Oh, I'll tell you, that same episode that I was telling you where I was flying backwards and I was pregnant, I was really scared -- and I guess that was just me, not necessarily as Dana. I was, because -- to answer the question another way there, is not many times where Gillian is actually scared on the set. I mean, because you know we see everything that is going on and it is all technical. But there was that time when this guy had this gun on me and, um, I didn't know -- oh, you know what -- this whole thing with Brandon Lee had just happened, and it was like shortly after that and besides there was this gun on me and I had this jacket on underneath, but I was concerned that some kind of a mistake was being made. That was something that was honestly a fear for me, but that was like the first and only time, I think. There have certainly been times where I have read scripts when I have to put it down and go in the other room, or make sure that I am reading it long before I am going to bed."

Q: A little girl asks "The episode where Tooms jumps out at you, were you really scared? When he jumps out and pulls you down?"

GA: (smiling) "Um, yes. [Laughter.] You know what? I'll tell you a secret -- I knew that was going to happen. Whenever you do that kinda stuff -- what you want to do as an actor -- because the character is not supposed to know that something is going to happen, so you're walking around pretending that you don't know that something is going to happen, and something does and it is always shocking. Whenever you know that a gun is going to go off, and you're waiting, you're waiting, you're waiting, and when it finally goes off you jump out of your pants. You know it is going to happen, but you are still affected by it. So, fortunately, yes, it makes it easier for an actor to act as if they are scared -- but it is freaky when somebody you know pulls your legs out from under you, no matter what the situation is, whether you're acting or not."

Q: "Hi, I saw a picture of your daughter -- she's so cute."

GA: [Alarmed] "You did? How?"

Q: "I don't know, somebody just told me that they ripped it out of the TV Guide or something."

GA: TV Guide!? That wasn't my daughter. Oh no. I never let anybody take a picture of her. I hope she was cute, whoever's daughter she was. [Laughs.] I'm sorry, I don't mean to give you such a hard time."

Q: "I was wondering if you were going to have any more kids?"

GA: "Am I going to have any more kids? Um, I think so eventually. It would have to be after the show is over before I try to do that again. Yeah, probably a good 'nother few years. Why, do you know somebody or were you just wondering?"

Q: "I just want to say that male/female relationships on TV are badly portrayed, in my opinion, Because they feel like they have to have a romantic relationship in order to make their job work. What do you think makes Mulder and Scully's relationship with each other unique in this situation?"

GA: "Um, well, it is different than that. They work incredibly intimately together on a daily basis, day in and day out -- they stay in the same motels together -- but they respect each other highly and they remain friends. I think it's just -- obviously, it's the writers -- but I think that underneath that it's who they are. I mean, they have very high morals, especially Scully ... well, only Scully [much laughter]. Yeah, I mean, I think that they may take the platonic nature of their relationship out of respect and responsibility to their work and, uh, that's hard to do. It's a great example, but when you're working intensely with somebody, whether it's in school or in college or at work, and you have that kind of dynamic ,it's hard not to take advantage of it when it's there, you know. I think it's kind of funny -- so it's a good example of how to keep the boundaries very clear, because it's a lot safer; it's a lot easier to work with somebody in general when those boundaries are clear and there's not -- um, when you know inside yourself, I guess that -- what am I talking about? When you know inside yourself that this is something that you are not going to take advantage of, that's a good feeling of power, of empowerment when you know that ... it's all wishy-washy -- let me shut up."

Q: "First of all we all love you, Gillian -- as if you didn't know that yet. Is there any special reason why you named your daughter Piper?"

GA: "Um, well, it's hard to find a name for a child, and I went through so many different names as I'm sure everybody does, and this little thing inside me --I started to really get an idea of her personality at about the seventh month, and she was jumping around, sticking at me. I mean, you could see her feet, you could practically see the imprint -- she's got big feet -- see the imprint of her feet on my belly. And I could tell from the feeling of the child growing inside me that she was very spunky, but she was also very strong. And after going through so many names and so many names, my husband was reading a list of names from an old yearbook of his and was just going down the list and he landed on the name and it was like [snaps fingers] bingo, you know -- I automatically knew it was her."

Q: "I bet it was really hard when you were pregnant on the X-Files, was it hard for you?"

GA: "Yeah, it started to get really hard when I gained a lot of weight. I'm short, and I gained a lot of weight. [Someone in crowd yells, "No, you didn't!"] What?! I gained 52 pounds! I'm 5'3". I gained 52 -- I gained a lot of weight! Those big trenchcoats helped -- they did -- they hid me well, but I did I gained a lot of weight. What was the question? Oh yeah, my feet got really swollen and it was hard to stay on my feet for so many hours at a time. I had to sit down a lot, and that's mostly when it became hard, and then after when she was born not being able to spend as much time with her those first few weeks as I would've liked to."

Q:"You've done a couple of spreads in publications and what I've noticed is that they kind of exploit your feminine qualities a little too much -- how do you feel about that? And if you were peanut butter would you rather be regular or crunchy and why? [This girl was odd.]

GA: "Crunchy" [doesn't know why] "'Cause .... it's .....nutty? And what was the first question? the magazine question? I guess I haven't been aware of that? In what ways?"

Q: "Well, in magazines your cleavage has been kind of accentuated just a tad."

GA: "I think that the object has been that this is Scully and that most of the time when we take photographs we concentrate mostly on Gillian and not that I.."

Q: "There have been some instances when part of your brassiere has been shown, and so how can we respect you." [She is soundly booed by the audience.]

GA: "I think that there has been a heightened attempt to show that I am not as straight and as contained as the character is [much applause], not only so that more people can relate to me as human beings, but also that people can see that I might be able to play another character other than Scully -- somebody who might be, uh [someone yells "You go, girl!" to much laughter] -- that's been the attempt."

That was the last question, and GA said "Thank you very much."

[She gets a huge standing screaming ovation where upon she seems to start to get a bit teary eyed again.]

"Thank you, guys. I don't know what to say -- I can't tell you how touched I am right now, and I .. I don't know -- thank you." [She starts to leave the stage and the crowd goes wild she stops, smiles, and waves to us some more.]

I hope you all enjoyed this. I have always had a lot of respect for the lovely and talented Ms. Anderson, but let me tell you it grew tenfold at this event. It is something I will never forget. She is witty, endearing, genuine, and honest.