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Inside Bay Area
January 17, 2006

From Aliens to Dickens
By Sue Young

Gillian Anderson looked exquisite, and much calmer, than last time we saw her.

Anderson admits that her nine years starring on "The X-Files" took a toll on her private life. She spent up to 16 hours a day working on the Fox series in Vancouver and spent the rest of the time promoting it.

"I've lost track of how many times reporters would ask me if I believed in aliens, and each time they asked, it was as if they thought it was the first time I'd ever heard the question," Anderson said.

Anderson left the country after the series wrapped and has been living in England, where she met her husband who was working for the Financial Times in London. She's been doing a lot of stage work and independent films.

She now stars in the BBC-produced epic "Bleak House," which will be shown beginning Sunday on PBS. The 16-hour film, based on the Charles Dickens' novel, will air in six parts, with parts one and six airing for two hours and the rest as one-hour shows.

Anderson plays Lady Deadlock, a woman with a secret past that threatens to destroy her.

She says she was reluctant to return to television, even British television, after the grueling "X-Files" schedule.

"I told my agent I wouldn't do television," Anderson said. "But I couldn't resist this script."

Anderson says she won't return to American television, but she is hoping that a new "X-Files" movie will be in the works soon.

"I want to do it. David (Duchovny) wants to do it and Chris Carter already knows what he wants to write," she said. "But there's a hold-up with Fox."

Anderson says that moving to London has been great for her soul, but hasn't done much to help her feature film career.

"I went to a Golden Globes party the other night and it was great talking to about four friends, but my agent was trying to tell everyone I had done 'Bleak House' and no one cared because they hadn't seen it," Anderson said. "In Hollywood, you are only as good as the last thing you were in and it's been a while since I've been in anything. It's very difficult to be on the selling side of this profession."

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