The X-Files: Gillian Anderson Reveals Why She's Saying Goodbye to Scully

Gillian Anderson is reiterating her truth: The current season of The X-Files will be her last as Scully.

The Emmy winner elaborated on her decision to bid her signature role adieu Wednesday during a Q&A with reporters at the Television Critics Association winter press tour, explaining that “there are lots of things that I want to do in my life and career. It’s been an extraordinary opportunity. I’m extremely grateful. [But] I don’t want to be tied down to doing one thing for months and months… I like to be challenged as an actor. That’s why I got into this business. And it’s time for me to hang up Scully’s hat. This is it for me — I’m really serious.”

Unless Anderson has a change of heart, her decision to call it quits all but confirms that Season 11 — the second episode of which airs tonight (8/7c, Fox) — will be the franchise’s swan song (at least on the small screen). “For me, The X-Files is Mulder and Scully,” series creator Chris Carter insisted in a recent interview with Collider. “I think if it were without Scully, I wouldn’t do it. That’s not my X-Files.”

Anderson first floated the idea that this latest, 10-episode run would be her farewell back in October at New York Comic-Con. And earlier this month, she maintained that stance, telling TV Guide, “I’ve said from the beginning this is it for me.” She admitted to being “a bit surprised by people’s [shocked] reaction to my announcement, because my understanding was that this was a single season.”