David Duchovny Goes Inside the Mind of Charles Manson in NBC's 'Aquarius'

by Raphael Chestang 4:00 PM PDT, June 11, 2015
Playing David Duchovny Goes Inside the Mind of Charles Manson in NBC's 'Aquarius'

In NBC's Aquarius, David Duchovny plays a cop who goes undercover to investigate Charles Manson prior to the Manson Family's infamous murder spree, and he told ET what it was like getting into the dark new role.

"What's interesting about the show is that Manson is less the man but the symbol," Duchovny said. "This is two years before he's murdered anybody."

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In the show, Duchovny's character, homicide detective Sam Hodiak, is working in Hollywood in 1967 when an ex-girlfriend asks him to look into the disappearance of her daughter. The case soon leads to Charles Manson. ET interviewed Manson in 1989.

"The real blame of it belongs to your society," Manson told ET. "You raised your children up. I didn't."

Duchovny shared his take on our interview with the notorious criminal, who is currently behind bars at Corcoran State Prison.

"The Manson that you see there, to me, is a guy playing a role," Duchovny said. "He's playing into what people's perception is of him. To me that's almost like professional wrestling."

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It was four years after the Manson interview that ET first met Duchovny.

The 54-year-old actor became a household name after The X-Files hit the air in 1993. Before then, no one really knew how to say his name.

"Doo-chuv-nee? Doo-kor-nee? Doo-chuv-ee-nee?" These are just some of the mispronunciations he told ET's Kevin Frazier that he was getting prior to his Golden Globe-winning role.

We showed Duchovny a clip from his first interview with ET in 1993 in which he showed us how to say his name once and for all.

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"Jones," Duchovny joked at the time before giving the real pronunciation. "Doo-kuv-nee."

Aquarius airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on NBC, but the entire first season is available here.