Con Reviews

X-Fest 2018 – La Salle, IL

Celebrating 25 Years of The X-Files

X-Fest 2018 alien proves the truth is out there
X-Fest 2018 alien proves the truth is out there.

On March 3, the truth was out there at X-Fest 2018 in La Salle, IL. My friend and fellow X-Files fan, Toni Wood, invited me to join her on a quest to meet some stars. We didn’t know what to expect, but we’re both always up for some nerdy, fangirl fun. So we hit the road.

After driving an hour and a half for me and three hours total for her, Toni and I arrived at Celebrations 150 in La Salle. While it was a small venue for a convention, beside it they added a large, outdoor, heated tent to increase the space. 

As X-Fest isn’t a large convention, attendees who purchased celebrity signings and photo ops had no problems getting them. Even the longest lines were nothing compared to what you’d see at any of the Wizard World events. The vibe was laid back, which was a nice change from the usual insanity of large cons.

The Guests

Actor Steven Willams, who played X, with one of the X-Fest organizers
Actor Steven Willams, who played X, with one of the X-Fest organizers.

Since this was a more intimate event, it wasn’t a draw for the main stars – Gillian Anderson (Agent Dana Scully) and David Duchovny (Agent Fox Mulder). Instead, it featured a large number of cast regulars and popular guest stars. The most popular cast member was Mitch Pileggi, who played Assistant Director Walter Skinner. 

In addition, other series regulars in attendance included William B. Davis (Cigarette Smoking Man), Annabeth Gish (Agent Monica Reyes), Nicholas Lea (Alex Krycek), Jerry Hardin (Deep Throat), and Steven Williams (X).

Show guest stars included Doug Hutchison (Eugene Victor Tooms), Sabrina and Erika Krievins (Eve 9 and Eve 10), Nick Chinlund (Donnie Pfaster), Megan Leitch (Samantha Mulder), Brian Thompson (Alien Bounty Hunter), Steve Railsback (Duane Barry), Robert Wisden (Robert Patrick Modell), Karin Konoval (Mrs. Peacock, Madame Zelma, Judy Poundstone, Chucky Poundstone), Tom Noonan (John Lee Roche), and Michael Berryman (Owen Lee Jarvis). In addition to an X-Files episode, Berryman is best known for the movie, “The Hills Have Eyes”.

X-Fest 2018 Activities

Face Off artists Rashaad Santiago and Rick Prince (in green shirts, from left) with their makeup masterpieces at X-Fest 2018
Face Off artists Rashaad and Rick Prince (green shirts, from left) with their makeup masterpieces at X-Fest 2018.

As well as the guest encounters, activities at X-Fest 2018 included guest panels, screenings of select X-Files episodes, and special F/X makeup demonstrations. Face Off artists Rick Prince (Season 5) and Rashaad Santiago (Season 6) transformed a dozen participants into strange and colorful aliens throughout the day. While spray-on makeup was their main medium, they also used silicone prosthetics to create three-dimensional effects.

For instance, Toni was one of the lucky ones to get “aliened up.” She became a lovely sunshine-yellow creature with sparkly blue and violet features. As a matter of fact, she had the makeup on when she had her photo taken with Mitch Pileggi.

About the X-Files

The X-Files debuted in 1993 and inspires millions of viewers to believe in conspiracy theories and little gray men. The show ran for nine consecutive seasons. Although, in 2016, Mulder and Scully returned for 10 new episodes. Skinner, Reyes, and the Cigarette Smoking Man were among the other original characters who came back.  I’m sure X-Files fans are excited about the eleventh season that’s in the works!  

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About the author

Minda Powers-Douglas

Minda was raised in movie theaters and can identify just about any 80s movie. She lives among her husband's comic books. Favorite movies: Sunset Boulevard, Rearview Window, The Goonies, IT, and Disney's animated Alice in Wonderland. Other favorite things: Stephen King books, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Bates Motel, Keanu Reeves, horror movies, Harry Potter, used bookstores, really good cookies, and her daughter. She is a freelance writer and editor. She also really likes cemeteries. Website: Twitter: @cemeteryminda and @scatteredadvice

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