The single dad of two is back on the small screen – and happier than ever

By Aili Nahas
Updated May 20, 2015 01:00 PM
Credit: Larry Busacca/Getty

The truth is still out there.

It’s been over two decades since the premiere of The X-Files, and this summer, David Duchovny is stepping back into Agent Fox Mulder’s shoes for a six-episode miniseries set to air next year.

The multi-talented actor – who stars in NBC’s Aquarius (premiering May 28) and has a rock album Hell or Highwater – says he’s “excited” about the cult classic’s return.

“It’s going to be strange and fun,” says Duchovny. “Thankfully, Gillian [Anderson] will be there, and we’ll both be in positions of like, ‘Are we really here doing this again? Are we really saying those words again?’ At least we’ll have each other.”

Since the sci-fi hit ended in 2002, “I’m essentially unchanged, character-wise,” says Duchovny, 54. “Physically, I’m obviously different!” Older, and perhaps a bit wiser.

Says Duchovny, “I think Gillian would probably agree that we’re both better at what we do. I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do with the characters now. You go back to the original pilot, and it’s like, ‘Wow, we’ve been doing this a while!’ ”

Now he’s busier than ever. Duchovny, who fulfilled a lifelong dream recording the album he also co-wrote, is relishing his new role on Aquarius as a 1960s homicide detective whose missing persons investigation leads him to Charles Manson. “It just grabbed me,” Duchovny says of the script. “I’ve been interested in true crime since I was a little boy. It was always interesting to me.”

For more from David Duchovny, including his life as a single dad, pick up the new issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday