The Gillian Anderson FAQ

Gillian Anderson

1. Who is Gillian Anderson?

Gillian Anderson is the actress who plays Special Agent Dana Scully, on the Fox Network's "The X-Files" on Friday nights.

2. How is Gillian pronounced?


3. Where does she come from?

Gillian was born on August 9, 1968 in Chicago, IL, to Ed and Rosemary Anderson and is one of 3 children. She lived in Puerto Rico, and then in London, so her father could attend a film school there (Her family still owns a flat there). At age 11 she moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan, where she attended elementary and then high school. She then moved to Chicago where she went to college and once she had gained her BFA she then moved to New York, N.Y. where she made several theater performances and then to Los Angeles in about '91/'92. Upon gaining the role of Dana Scully, Gillian then relocated to Nth Vancouver, Canada where she now resides with her husband and daughter.

4. What is her educational background?

Gillian attended Fountain Elementary and then City High in Grand Rapids, Michigan. After graduating in 1986 she moved to Chicago and attended the Goodman Theater School at DePaul University (a major theater conservatory), in Chicago, IL where she obtained her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. While attending DePaul Univeristy, she also studied at the summer program at the National Theater of Great Britain at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y.

5. Vital Statistics?

Gillian is 5'2 ", smallish build, auburn hair, hazel eyes (although they appear to change color regularly, but that is probably due to different lighting) cute nose, fair complexion(slightly freckled), perfect lips, yatta yatta yatta ;)

6. Is Gillian married?

Yes, after an engagement that lasted "shorter than a month but longer then a week," with, well she wants it kept quiet.... Anyway they met on the set of the X-Files where he worked for several of the early episodes and the couple tied the knot on New Years Day (1994) on a golf course in Hawaii.

"We kept it very, very small. In fact, it was just the two of us and a Buddhist priest on the 17th hole of this golf course in Hawaii"

7. Is Gillian pregnant?

She was yes. (The last episode she appeared pregnant in was EP #06 of Season 2.) Gillian was due on the 09/13 and gave birth on 09/25/94.

8. What was the baby named?

Gillian gave birth by Cesarean on the 09/25/94, to a baby girl, 8 lb. 10 oz, named Piper Anderson.

9. How did she get into acting? How did she get the role of Dana Scully?

After initially wanting to be a marine biologist, at about age 17, she was in "a couple of auditions" in the Grand Rapids Community Theater, where she was "cast in a couple of things," and from then it was as if she "had never thought about marine biology." While studying for her Bachelor of Fine Arts at DePaul University, Gillian spent some time in the National Theater of Great Britain. During this time, she also had a role in a film named "The Turning" in 1988. After receiving her degree, she moved to New York and embarked on a serious career in theater - including an off-broadway production of Alan Ayckbourne's "Absent Friends," for which she won a Theater World award in 1991. She also appeared in "The Philanthropist" at the Long Wharf Theater in New Haven, Connecticut. Gillian then moved to Los Angeles and spent a year auditioning for various things, during which time she did "Home Fires Burning" for a cable station as well as the audiocassette version of "Exit to Eden" by Anne Rice. Although she had once vowed she would "never do TV", and seemed set on a career in film or theater, being out of work for a year or so changed her mind and she had a role in an episode of "Class of '96" and then was impressed enough by the role of Dana Scully that she auditioned for the role.

"The chance to play FBI Special Agent Dana Scully was the series key attraction, I was reading something that for the first time in a long time involved a strong, independent intelligent woman as a lead character"

The auditioning went well and it seems Chris Carter had decided on casting Gillian for the role. The network (FOX) "freaked" at the possibility of casting someone with as little TV experience as Gillian and also appeared to be looking for someone more "bimboish". So they flew in more actresses from New York, but Chris stood his ground and they cast Gillian as Special Agent Dana Scully. Gillian, who was also somewhat surprised at being cast said, "I was convinced they were looking for someone leggier, and with a bigger chest." (Thank god for Chris Carter and small miracles...) Gillian is enjoying working on the show, even if it was a little stressful at first and sees the recognition she has been getting as a great step which will open many doors for her, as her goal is to do some more theater as well as feature and independent films eventually. (in an X-Files movie we all hope) :)

10. What is Gillian's view on the possibility of the phenomenon covered on the show?

A quote from GA can sum it up better than I could:

"The more I get comfortable with the character, the more she's becoming like me in some of her mannerisms. I'm *not* that much of a skeptic. I do believe in UFO's, I do believe in certain paranormal phenomena, like ESP and psychokinesis and all that. I've always been fascinated with it and I think, on a certain level, I've just known or assumed it to be reality. In that respect we're very different. I think that I have a tendency to get as single-minded and obsessed with my work as Dana does, but in a different way. She's a medical doctor and an FBI agent and I'm an actress."
Also Gillian has said that when she was in Hawaii getting married she spent a lot of time watching the sky looking for "them", and that she is "a full fledged believer" in addition to being "one of the least straight laced people you will ever meet." So yes, it's safe to say Gillian's view on such phenomenon is that anything is possible.

11. What is Gillian Anderson like???

From all reports she is a very intelligent, hardworking, and charming woman with an easygoing and bubbly personality (in other words a heartbreaker to us guys) who genuinely enjoys her work even though she found the schedule of working in a weekly show very stressful at first, though you wouldn't guess it from her consistently exemplary performances. She is also very open and honest, as well as having a quirky and charming sense of humor. Glen Morgan has referred to her as "very smart" and Chris Carter is also impressed by how hardworking she is. Gillian was at work each day up until two days before the birth of Piper. She took 6 weeks off to recover and spend some time at home.

12. Does Gillian Anderson know that the GATB exists?

Yes, she does know the GATB exists, and this is what she said in an article, "The X-Philes," from Starlog Platinum #4, November 1994. (Shamelessly stolen from Julianne Lee.)

Anderson is surprised, though she says it's flattering. "It's something I certainly didn't expect," she says, "especially with Scully. She's independent and she's passionate about her work. The character is not just a little bit of those attributes, she's very much so. I find it terrific that some people should find that stimulating."
and also from the Sacramento Bee,10/09/94 "Creepy, smart "X-Files" Inspires a cult following" by Steve Pond:
And while the actors aren't quite so computer literate, they are aware of the attention. "I've been told that on one of the computer services there's something called the Gillian Anderson Testosterone Brigade," says Anderson with a laugh. "That just tickles me."
What can I say but... :)

13. What is Gillian's phone number/Email address, etc?

Her phone number is unknown, which is just as well I think. From all reports Gillian isn't on any computer service, but I asked if she had an Email address in my letter anyway...not that I'd tell any of you (if I ever get a reply) :) As far as a contact address for fan mail, gifts and such:

Gillian Anderson
c/o The X-Files Production Office
Building 10
110-555 Brooks Bank Avenue,
North Vancouver, BC,
V7J 3S5, Canada.

14. What are Gillian's other performances?

"The Turning" (1988)
"Home Fires Burning" (1992)
"Exit to Eden" - audiocassette/Lisa Kelly (1992)
"Class of '96" Episode #8 - "The Accused" (1993)
"The X-Files" Dana Scully (1993 - present)

15. Where else can I find Gillian Anderson on video, etc.?

"The Turning" - Unknown. (If you know, tell me)
"Home Fires Burning" - Hmm... might pop up on a cable station sometime...(If so tape it and send me a copy :)
Exit to Eden by Anne Rice (writing as Anne Rampling) published by Random House AudioBooks. The abridged audiocassette is $16 US, $18 CAN. Available at any bookstore. (Note: If you like GA's voice, this is a must have)
"Class of '96" - Wait till it repeats and tape it (and send me a copy :).
"The X-Files" - Friday nights on FOX. (and affiliates)

16. Where can I find photographs of Gillian?

There are two places I know of so far:

S&P Parker's Movie Market (714)-376-0326. Two must have Gillian Anderson photo's are #12684 and #12015 (8 x 10 Color - $5). They also have several David Duchovny photos. Thanks to Gerald Hough (Weasel).

Another place is Hollywood Book and Poster Co, (213)-465-8764. They have about 50 GA shots, some from the series, some posed as DS and GA. (also a lot of DD ones) However, there is no catalogue or numbering system so you have to order blind, but if you describe the type of shot you want they will help you out. They are good quality and you have a choice of a black or a cropped border. Color 8 x 10's are $5.

All quotations and such are taken without permission, yatta yatta yatta......

Thanks to Michael Lynch for correcting my atrocious sentence structuring :)

GA FAQ 11/01/94. Edition 1.02
May, 1995.

Agent Of Fortune

by Virginia Campbell

Gillian Anderson's hit TV show "The X-Files" is more entertaining than most movies, and many people think she's a better actress than you see in most movies, too.

Gillian Anderson probably had less on-screen experience than anyone but the Olsen twins when she was hired to star opposite Dlavid Duchovny in TV's creepiest, rainiest, most addictive series, "The X-Files." But "X-Files" creator Chris Carter's inlstincts were on the mark with Anderson, because she lends FBI agent Dana Scully a slow-burn blend of gravity and humanity to spark with the off-the-wall quality of her partner Fox Mulder (Duchovny) and to anchor the show's witty, dour weirdness. The ability to project gravity and humanity being in such short supply among young screen actresses, perhaps Hollywood will find a role that calls for a younger, softer-edged Jodie Foster and put Anderson to work on the