Clarkson got a friend in X Files' Gillian Anderson who says Top Gear host is an 'institution'
By Baz Bamigboye
Daily Mail: 19 March 2015
Award-winning actress Gillian Anderson said Top Gear hooks its audience like a 'testosterone-filled injection', and is devoured by fans like TV 'comfort food'.
The star, who is in talks to resume playing FBI Agent Dana Scully in an X-Files TV re-boot, and will play murder detective Stella Gibson in a third season of The Fall, told me that embattled host Jeremy Clarkson was 'very sweet' to her when she was a guest driver on the popular BBC show recently.
'People rely on it,' she said. 'He's become an institution - and the show's an institution.'
The actress, who in addition to her TV work has been nominated for an Olivier award for her scorching performance as Blanche DuBois in A Streetcar Named Desire at the Young Vic, told me the hysteria over Clarkson's suspension was understandable, because fans addicted to his controversial style weren't 'going to get their fix any more'.
In any event, Anderson understands all about satisfying TV viewers. She and Jamie Dornan, the hunter and the hunted, served up some pretty tasty fare in Allan Cubitt's electrifying The Fall.
She will once more don Detective Superintendant Gibson's sensual silk blouses to film a third series next year. Oh, and some of those seen in season two will be back in series three. 'She's not going to suddenly get all new blouses!' Gillian exclaimed. 'The realism is important to me, and she's obviously not going to let go of that wardrobe. So, there'll be a mixture of old and new.'
There will be some digging into Stella's past, too; but the opening episodes will look at the repercussions from the series two finale - when serial killer Paul Spector was shot by a jealous husband as Stella was about to apprehend him.
Anderson refused to give too much away about the glamorous but tough officer with 'Daddy' issues she plays in the show. 'It's the mystery that keeps it as compelling as it is,' she said.
However, she did say that The Fall won't be shot until very late this year, or early next - and that she believed it could go into a fourth season in 2017.
Plus, if intense negotiations can be finalised soon, then filming of six episodes of the very last look at the X-Files, the sci-fi show that launched her and David Duchnovny 22 years ago, could be under way as early as June.
Writers who worked on the original series have been asked to contribute. 'The idea is to get the old gang back, have some fun and get a bit of closure for us and the audience,' she told me.
On stage, Anderson was part of the acclaimed Young Vic season that produced A View From The Bridge that's packing them in at Wyndham's Theatre right now; and the mouthwatering re-imagining of Tennessee Williams's Streetcar, which saw her completely re-define Blanche.
She's excited about her Olivier nomination - one of 11 for the Young Vic - and of the prospect of playing Blanche in New York. It's likely that she, Ben Foster and Vanessa Kirby will reprise their roles in Joshua Andrews's production at the St Ann's Warehouse in Brooklyn in the spring and summer of next year.
'It's nice to be able to do it over there,' she said.
And as if she's not already busy enough, a sci-fi blockbuster, Robot Overlords, in which she stars, opens next week.