Beyond its status as one of the greatest television shows ever, The X-Files led its stars Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny on to other major TV successes. It also gave a few other now well-known stars a leg up. Here are 12 actors who had small parts in The X-Files before going on to major TV roles down the track.


The X-Files - Donal Logue

Guest Star: Donal Logue
The X-Files episode: ‘Squeeze’ – Season 1, 1993
Played: Agent Tom Colton, an FBI agent who needs some spooky help
Later TV success: Gotham (88+ episodes)


The X-Files - Felicity Huffman

Guest star: Felicity Huffman
The X-Files episode: ‘Ice’ – Season 1, 1993
Played: Dr Nancy Da Silva, facing an alien agro outbreak
Later TV success: Desperate Housewives (180 episodes)


The X-Files - CCH Pounder

Guest star: CCH Pounder
The X-Files episode: ‘Duane Barry’ – Season 2, 1994
Played: Agent Lucy Kazdin, stuck in a hostage situation with an apparent alien abductee
Later TV success: The Shield (89 episodes)


The X-Files - Bradley Whitford

Guest star: Bradley Whitford
The X-Files episode: ‘Firewalker’ – Season 2, 1994
Played: Daniel Trepkos, facing a parasitic alien organism
Later TV success: The West Wing (155 episodes)


The X-Files - Terry O'Quinn

Guest star: Terry O’Quinn
The X-Files episode: ‘Aubrey’ – Season 2, 1995, ‘Trust No 1’ – Season 9, 2002
Played: Lt. Brian Tillman, facing becoming a daddy and ‘Shadow Man’, a cyber-stalker.
Later TV success: Lost (117 episodes)


The X-Files - Tony Shalhoub

Guest star: Tony Shalhoub
The X-Files episode: ‘Soft Light’ – Season 2, 1995
Played: Chester Ray Banton, a man with a deadly shadow
Later TV success: Monk (125 episodes)


The X-Files - Giovanni Ribisi

Guest star: Giovanni Ribisi
The X-Files episode: ‘D.P.O.’ – Season 3, 1995
Played: Darin Peter Oswald, handy Virtua Fighter player and electrical wiz…
Later TV success: Sneaky Pete (20+ episodes)


The X-Files - Bryan Cranston

Guest star: Bryan Cranston
The X-Files episode: ‘Drive’ – Season 6, 1998
Played: Patrick Crump, kidnapper and believer in all things ‘Go West’
Later TV successes: Malcolm in the Middle (151 episodes), Breaking Bad (62 episodes)


The X-Files - Jesse L. Martin

Guest star: Jesse L. Martin
The X-Files episode: ‘The Unnatural’ – Season 6, 1999
Played: Josh Exley, Roswell Grays alien baseballer
Later TV success: Law & Order (198 episodes), The Flash (93+ episodes)


The X-Files - Jane Lynch

Guest star: Jane Lynch
The X-Files episode: ‘Lord of the Flies’ – Season 9, 2001
Played: Mrs. Anne T. Lokensgard, school principal and lady of the flies
Later TV success: Glee (121 episodes)


The X-Files - Aaron Paul

Guest star: Aaron Paul
The X-Files episode: ‘Lord of the Flies’ – Season 9, 2001
Played: David ‘Sky Commander Winky’ Winkle, daredevil and lice infestee
Later TV success: Breaking Bad (62 episodes)


The X-Files - Michael Emerson

Guest star: Michael Emerson
The X-Files episode: ‘Sunshine Days’ – Season 9, 2002
Played: Oliver Martin, owner of The Brady Bunch house?
Later TV successes: Lost (78 episodes), Person of Interest (103 episodes)