After discovering a passion for surfing when he was twelve, Chris graduated from California State University at Long Beach in 1979 with a degree in Journalism. He was then hired by Surfing Magazine, where he spent the next several years writing articles, conducting interviews and experiencing the pressure of writing under deadlines.
In 1981, he was inspired to write screenplays by the film Raiders of the Lost Ark. On the strength of two screenplays, including the comedy, Rest Home For Spies, Jeffrey Katzenberg eventually hired Chris for a Hollywood powerhouse movie “factory.”
In 1985, Chris began writing screenplays for Disney. There, he helped write several movies and contributed to established series, such as Cameo By Night, Rags to Riches and Brand New Life.
He also wrote two pilots for the series, Copter Cop and Cool Culture. Although they were met with praise, the series unfortunately proved impossible to produce due to unrelated circumstances.
In 1992, Chris was signed to 20th Century Fox and commissioned to develop three new series. His first attempt was The X-Files, which became a world-wide smash hit that ran for nine years and also spawned a feature film midway through its run. In 1996, Millennium started a run that would last three years, but his 1999 series Harsh Realm was dealt an early death. X-Files spin-off The Lone Gunmen debuted in 2001, but the unique mixture of humor and conspiracy also went to an early grave. The second X-Files movie, The X-Files: I Want To Believe, was released in 2008. Carter wrote the script with long-time collaborator and X-Files writer Frank Spotnitz, and directed the movie. This was Carter’s first outing as a director of a feature film.
Chris currently lives in Malibu with wife Dori Pierson, with a second home in Santa Barbara. He still has a passion for surfing that began in his childhood.
Interview with Chris on February 5, 2016
Interview with Chris on January 29, 2016 (last 20 minutes)