Laverne Basham, who does makeup for the two stars, said: "Before, I would always have to worry about keeping David and Gillian dry. Now I have to mop the sweat off them."
Paul Rabwin, one of the drama's producers who specializes in post-production on the series, said: "The colors here have a whole different hue. We're accustomed to a gloomy, dark look, so this presents many challenges for creating atmospheric conditions. The camera department is using different film stock, and we're also using different cameras. We're looking forward to creating a whole new look for the show without destroying its integrity."
Sunshine will not be the only thing that will bring more scrutiny to the series this season. Fans and industry watchers will be analyzing the ratings of the series to see whether there was any boost from this summer's heavily hyped feature version, which 20th Century Fox had been hoping to build into a franchise. The movie served as a link between the two seasons. In last May's finale, the FBI bureau where Mulder and Scully work was burned down by the villainous Cigarette-Smoking Man (William B. Davis). The movie ended with the bureau being reopened.
"The changes aren't going to be dramatic in the show," Carter said. "The mythology will continue. Much has been explained. We've seen the aliens. Now how do we approach something that has been taken out of the bag?"
Carter also will be spending more time this season on "Millennium," his Friday night Fox series about an investigator who can tap into the criminal mind. The edgy drama, which is based in Vancouver, has struggled its first two seasons.
"I'm back writing on several of the shows, and we're going for good, scary movie mysteries," he said. "We're trying to get viewers back to the show."
But for now, Carter is consumed with his directing assignment, which he called "fun, but very challenging--it's what I call stiff-neck directing."
At one point during a rehearsal, Anderson stood still while Carter, silver hair spilling from under a baseball cap, silently circled her, imagining how the camera would move. The extras--including some in Nazi garb--quietly watched him.
It was a strange, almost surreal sight. And typically "X-Files." Inside the ballroom, there was no shortage of smoke.
* "The X-Files" airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on Fox (Channel 11). The new season begins Nov. 8.