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'The X-Files' reaped a treasure of Golden Globes, but only one top Emmy

July 26, 2008 |  8:51 pm

Considering the shrugging reviews that "The X-Files" feature film is now getting, it won't be competing for Hollywood showbiz awards like its original TV series. Not even at the Golden Globes, where voters adored the tube version.

But not at first. "The X-Files" TV series debuted in 1993, greeted with cheers and blaring trumpets by TV critics and sci-fi freaks, but it was overlooked at the Globes. As its fan base and TV ratings grew, it finally got on the radar of voters, members of the foreign press whose daily job is to track the hottest new trends in Hollywood. 


In 1995, "The X-Files" was nominated for best drama series — and won. Then what happened to it after that is nearly as strange as the alien visits on "The X-Files" TV show. Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny were nominated in 1996, but not the show. Then things really got weird. In 1997, "The X-Files" was nommed again and won again, this time with Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny hitching a ride on its victory wagon. In 1998, it won best series again, but left its stars behind. In 1999, "The X-Files" and stars were nommed again, but lost and never returned to competition. Overall, "The X-Files" set a new record at the Globes that still stands: it has won best drama series the most times (three).

Being a Hollywood industry award, the Emmy is usually just as reluctant to reward sci-fi fare as the Oscar. However, "The X-Files" managed to score bids for best drama series in 1995, 1996 and 1997, losing to "NYPD Blue," "ER" and "Law & Order," respectively. Throughout the series' nine-year run, Duchovny was nommed for best actor three times, Anderson for best actress four.

In 1997, no Emmy pundits gave Anderson any hope of winning. Prognosticators were split betting on three favorites: Christine Lahti ("Chicago Hope"), Julianna Margulies ("ER") and Sherry Stringfield ("ER"). Roma Downey ("Touched by an Angel") was also in the race, but was dismissed as a lightweight impossibility.

But when Anderson pulled off a victory, it was a real Emmy shockeroo. However, the reason for her win could be seen in the sample episode she gave to jurors, which contained none of the usual kooky spooky "X Files" stuff. She gave voters "Momento Mori," a series classic that showcased her character suffering from a cancer believed to be terminal. Today it's widely considered her best performance throughout the series' run.

When Anderson accepted the prize, she thanked her family for being "wonderfully normal about this whole celebrity thing." Backstage she was asked by reporters if "The X-Files'" creepy plots ever gave her nightmares in real life. She replied, "Sometimes I have waking nightmares about the show."


Photo credit: ATAS