The series was inspired by the 1973 motion picture “Westworld,” written and directed by Michael Crichton, it kicks off its ten-episode season Sunday, OCT. 2 at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT), exclusively on HBO. “Westworld” is a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the evolution of sin, exploring a world in which every human appetite, no matter how noble or depraved, can be indulged.
The series was created for television by Jonathan Nolan (“Interstellar,” “The Dark Knight,” “Person of Interest”) and Lisa Joy (“Pushing Daisies,” “Burn Notice”), both of whom are executive producing and writing. Nolan will put in time behind the camera tackling director duties as well.
Jonathan Nolan explains:
Building on the incredibly evocative concept of the original film, we wanted to pose the question: If you could be completely immersed in a fantasy, one in which you could do whatever you wanted, would you discover things about yourself that you didn’t want to know?
Co-creator Lisa Joy adds:
We also wanted to explore what it means to be human from the outside in – through the eyes of the ‘hosts’: the lifelike AI characters that are the main attractions of the park. It’s a meditation on consciousness – the blessing and the burden of it – beautifully portrayed by our remarkable cast.
The “Westworld” series for HBO will star a dream cast led by none other than Anthony Hopkins (Academy Award® winner for “The Silence of the Lambs”; Academy Award® nominee for “Remains of the Day,” “Nixon,” “Amistad”)! Joining him on the production are Ed Harris (Golden Globe winner and Emmy® nominee for HBO’s “Game Change”; Academy Award® nominee for “Pollock,” “Apollo 13”), Evan Rachel Wood (Golden Globe nominee for “Thirteen”; Emmy® and Golden Globe nominee for HBO’s “Mildred Pierce”), James Marsden (the “X-Men” films), Thandie Newton (“Mission: Impossible II”) and Jeffrey Wright (HBO’s “Confirmation”; Emmy® and Golden Globe winner for HBO’s “Angels in America”).
Performances by Tessa Thompson (“Creed”), Sidse Babett Knudsen (“Borgen”), Jimmi Simpson (HBO’s “The Newsroom”), Rodrigo Santoro (“Focus,” “The 33”), Shannon Woodward (“Raising Hope”), Ingrid Bolsø Berdal (“Chernobyl Diaries”), Ben Barnes (“The Chronicles of Narnia” films), Simon Quarterman (“The Devil Inside”), Angela Sarafyan (“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn”), Luke Hemsworth (“Infini”) and Clifton Collins, Jr. (“Star Trek”), will also serve to bring this complex story to life.
Here is a brief introduction to the denizens of “Westworld”. The cast of characters is vast, but these descriptions should help viewers dive into the series once it premieres.
Dr. Robert Ford (Anthony Hopkins), is the brilliant, taciturn and complicated creative director, chief programmer and founder of Westworld, who has an uncompromising creative vision for the park. Dolores Abernathy (Evan Rachel Wood) is the provincial, beautiful and kind rancher’s daughter, who begins to discover that her entire idyllic existence is an elaborately constructed lie. While the Man in Black (Ed Harris), the distillation of pure villainy into one man, haunts the edges of the story.
Teddy Flood (James Marsden), is the new arrival to a small frontier town, who quickly proves both his charm and his talent with a revolver. Beautiful, razor-sharp madam Maeve Millay (Thandie Newton), has a genius for reading people and a knack for survival. However, her seen-it-all-before worldview is about to be challenged. Bernard Lowe (Jeffrey Wright) is the brilliant and quixotic head of the park’s Programming Division, whose keen observation of human nature provides him with boundless inspiration for his life’s work: creating artificial people.
Charlotte Hale (Tessa Thompson) is a mysterious and savvy provocateur with a unique perspective on Westworld. Theresa Cullen (Sidse Babett Knudsen), Westworld’s head of Quality Assurance, is responsible for keeping the park from sliding into unscripted chaos. William (Jimmi Simpson), a first-time visitor to the park, is initially wary of Westworld’s more lascivious attractions, but slowly uncovers a deeper meaning.
Hector Escaton (Rodrigo Santoro), Westworld’s perennial “most wanted” bandit, subscribes to the theory that the West is a wild place, and the only way to survive is to embrace the role of predator. Elsie Hughes (Shannon Woodward), a sardonic rising star in the Behavior Department, is charged with diagnosing the odd quirks of behavior in the park’s hosts. Armistice (Ingrid Bolsø Berdal) is a savage fighter and brutal bandit, whose ruthlessness is surpassed only by her abiding loyalty to her fellow outlaws.
Logan (Ben Barnes) is a veteran guest whose hedonistic romp through the park is equally motivated by self-indulgence and a desire to help his friend, William. Lee Sizemore (Simon Quarterman) is the head of Narrative, whose storylines tantalize the guests, while his temperament grates on his colleagues. Clementine Pennyfeather (Angela Sarafyan), one of Westworld’s most popular attractions, is perfectly beguiling, by design.
Stubbs (Luke Hemsworth) is the no-nonsense head of Security, charged with monitoring host and human interactions and ensuring the safety of the guests. Lawrence (Clifton Collins, Jr.), a charming but lethal outlaw, has a knack for maneuvering and negotiating the various criminal elements of Westworld.
Created For Television by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy; Executive Produced, Written and Directed By Jonathan Nolan; Executive Produced and Written By Lisa Joy; Executive Produced By J.J. Abrams, Jerry Weintraub, Bryan Burk. Inspired by the motion picture “Westworld,” which was written and directed By Michael Crichton. Produced by Kilter Films, Bad Robot Productions, and Jerry Weintraub Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television.
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