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How The X-Files Accidentally Got a Crew Member Arrested for Kidnapping

TV URBAN LEGEND: A crew member on The X-Files was accidentally arrested for kidnapping during the filming of an episode.

"Sein Und Heit" was the tenth episode of the seventh season of The X-Files (the title comes from the 1927 book, Being and Time, by German philsopher Martin Heidegger, which was naturally called Sein Und Heit in the original German).

The episode dealt with the mythology of the show, specifically the disppearance of Samantha Mulder, the sister of Agent Fox Mulder (played by David Duchovny).

The episode opens with a little girl going to bed and then her mother writing what appears to be a ransom note...

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The little girl then goes missing and Mulder heads off to Sacramento to help in the investigation...

We see Mulder's specific concern is that he recalls seeing another case years earlier where another mother was convicted of kidnapping her own child and she, too, wrote a very similar note (both notes mention Santa Claus)...

Mulder goes to visit the woman in prison, but she insists that she kidnapped and murdered her child in a bout of insanity...

Meanwhile, Mulder's mother tells him to stop looking into his sister's disappearance and then kills herself. This wrecks Mulder, but luckily, at least his partner, Agent Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) is there for him in a sweet moment...

The convicted mother than calls Mulder to come back to see her and she tells him that his sister was a "walk-in," a spirit that protects children...

Meanwhile, the mother of the missing girl is visited by a spirit of her daughter...

In the end, Scully figures out the clues all lead to a guy on a Christmas Tree farm who dresses as Santa Claus has been kidnapping and murdering little kids for decades, including the recent missing girl...

Okay, sad stuff, but what's this got to do with a crew member being kidnapped? Well, see that note I show above? The one in red. Well, this episode aired in 2000. Back in 2000, most folks did not use cellular phones. They still mostly just used pay phones. So a crew member stopped at a pay phone to make a call about the production while they were on the way to the set to shoot the scene. They had with them a folder that included in it the ransom note. Well, some local resident thought the crew member looked suspicious and when they drove off with the folder still in the pay phone booth, the "ransom note" was discovered.

Naturally, when the crew member realized that they had forgotten the folder at the pay phone booth, they returned and were promptly arrested for kidnapping!

The director of the episode, the late, great Kim Manners, recalled the whole situation as a "mess" in Marc Shapiro's All Things: The Official Guide to the X-Files Volume 6.

The legend is...

STATUS: True

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Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is bcronin@legendsrevealed.com.

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