Gillian Anderson, icon of the small screen for 30 years


(Cannes) Scientist at x-filessexologist and eccentric mother in Sex education“Iron Lady” in The crown… Since her debut as Agent Scully 30 years ago, Gillian Anderson has multiplied the roles of a strong woman on the small screen.

Posted at 10:40 a.m.

France Media Agency

Honored this week at the Canneseries festival, the 53-year-old actress was awarded the Variety Icon Award for her entire rich career, which began on the boards and passed through the cinema, but above all, emblematic of the history of television.

“In fact, I have embodied many iconic women,” admitted Gillian Anderson in front of a captivated audience at the Palais des Festivals, after receiving her award and walking the pink carpet.

The next day, the London-based American was cheered by hundreds of fans during a master class, in front of fans who grew up with FBI agent Dana Scully’s “fantastic Saturdays” on M6.

When he formed his legendary duo in 1993 in x-files with David Duchovny, the interpreter of Fox Mulder, Gillian Anderson is only 24 years old and dreams rather… of cinema.

“I did not want to do television because the sector at that time, and in particular for women, did not make people dream. Film actors doing television were stigmatized, and I always wanted to do film,” she says.

x-files it will give him the opportunity to appear in dark rooms, with two feature films taken from the series, in 1998 and 2008, but above all to invest houses for almost ten years.


Gillian Anderson played Margaret Thatcher in The crowna challenge that terrified her, at a time when “everyone gives their opinion every second”.

A success sometimes too heavy for the young actress, who became a mother at the age of 25, who cannot imagine the impact that her austere heroine will have on her career and on television, where strong female roles are later developed, such as in buffy the vampire slayer Where Xena the warrior.

Tour in Canada, x-files It attracted “a lot of attention when I didn’t even know who I was,” explains Gillian Anderson, also referring to the “abandonment” of the first of her three children “17 hours a day.”

Equal pay

When the series ended in 2002, the Chicago native went into exile in the UK, “determined to do something completely different” and happy to find people there who had thought, “from the beginning,” that she could play “something different than Scully”, especially in the theater.

His most notable success was signed in 2006 in the cinema with the last king of scotlandbut it’s still a series, The fallwhich brought him back to the fore in 2013.

She plays Stella Gibson, a London police officer sent to Northern Ireland in search of a serial killer. A woman ” Awesome (“tough guy”) as she likes them, feminist, independent with an assumed sexuality.


David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson in the movie The X-Files: I want to believe

“When I read the script I felt it was necessary” for us to know that “a woman like her can exist.”

She thus participated in the promotion of forty-year-old heroines in the 2010s, inaugurated by series such as nurse jackiestarring Eddie Falco.

And it also asserts itself off-camera, struggling to get the same salary as David Duchovny on the occasion of the series’ resurrection. x-files between 2016 and 2018.

In 2019, he created a surprise by trying his hand at comedy at Sex education through Jean Milburn, a mother of a teenage girl and a “morally ambiguous” sex therapist who she hopes will help lift “the taboo surrounding older women’s sexuality.”

In a completely different register, he lent his features to Margaret Thatcher in The crowna challenge that terrified her, at a time when “everyone gives their opinion every second”.

But, “if you want to survive in this job, you just have to go out there and do your best. If people like it, great! Otherwise, too bad”, explained who will also play Eleanor Roosevelt in The First Ladyexpected this month on the American channel Showtime.

It will surely continue to offer strong female roles, thanks to an exclusive deal with Netflix and its production company that was just announced.


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