David Duchovny: Part-Timer

Not to spoil Sunday’s “X-Files” season closer on you, but don’t look for Agent Mulder to get taken anywhere too far away. Disgruntled star David Duchovny reached a deal with Fox late Wednesday to return to the long-running sci-fi/thriller series next fall — at least on a part-time basis, the network has announced.

Per the deal, Duchovny (as “Spooky” Mulder) will appear in 11 of the series’ 22 planned new episodes. For his acting services, he’ll reportedly be paid upwards of $4.4 million, plus he’ll get his lawsuit against Fox (over syndication issues) settled. All told, Daily Variety says he’ll net a cool $20 mil to phone it in, er, work really hard.

“I am pleased we were able to come to an agreement that enables me to remain part of ‘The X-Files,'” Duchovny said in a terribly sounding statement Wednesday. “…I’m looking forward to going back to work.”

Fox renewed “The X-Files” for an eighth season on Tuesday, a day before it had Duchovny locked in. Gillian Anderson — Agent Scully to Duchovny’s Mulder — is already under contract to return as a full-time star.