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David Duchovny Returns to Detective Work For NBC With the Charles Manson-Based ‘Aquarius’

David Duchovny, Charles Manson
Getty Images/California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

After having spent seven years on ‘Californication,’ David Duchovny is returning to his detecting (and network television) roots as he’s signed on to lead NBC’s ‘Aquarius.’ There he’ll be playing a police detective who’s on the trail of Charles Manson and his cult members.

According to Variety, NBC has already given the thirteen episode first season a straight to series order, with the show being written by John McNamara (who recently worked on the Americanized version of ‘Prime Suspect’), who will also executive produce the series alongside Duchovny, Marty Adelstein (‘Prison Break’) and Melanie Greene. The show will follow Manson’s early criminal and cult efforts, but the 1969 murder spree that claimed the life of Sharon Tate will be the subject of later seasons. Weirdly enough, this is the second show currently in the works about Manson, as Fox is also working on a Bret Easton Ellis/Rob Zombie series about the Manson murders.

Duchovny first made a cult impression on ‘Twin Peaks‘ playing a cross dressing DEA agent, but he became famous as special agent Fox Mulder on ‘The X Files.’ This led to some movies, but he didn’t find a solid follow-up until he landed on Showtime’s ‘Californication,’ which will be wrapping up its seventh and final season shortly. Though Manson has been the subject of documentaries and films about his trial (Vincent Bugliosi’s book on the trial ‘Helter Skelter’  has been adapted twice for television), this could be an interesting new spin, and seems partly modeled on ‘Hannibal,’ which has also had thirteen episode season orders.

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