You’d think that an actor working on a TV show would know how it’s all going to pan out, right? Well, that’s not always how it is. Some plot twists are so heavily guarded that even the cast aren’t made aware of them until the very last moment. Such was the case with HBO’s Westworld, which finished its first season recently and provided viewers with some truly mind-blowing twists.
IndieWire recently sat down for an interview with several actors from the show and asked them about how much they knew while shooting and what was held back from them. As it turns out, the majority of them didn’t know anything in regards to the season’s biggest twists – but that didn’t stop them from trying to figure it all out.
“We were all just speculating,” says Jimmi Simpson, who plays William. “Shannon and Evan seemed to talk the most and have the most in depth reasons for everything. Half the time they’d be totally right, sometimes they’d be half-right and sometimes they’d be completely wrong.”
One person who was privy to the plot secrets was Jeffrey Wright, who knew about the Bernard twist after the pilot. However, he wasn’t allowed to tell anyone and had to do his best to keep his fellow cast members in the dark.
“I was a bit of a cheat, relative to everyone else, because I had prior knowledge,” Wright said. “So everyone else was a little in the dark, and I did my best to keep them there. It wasn’t only until the reveals were made in the scripts that I kind of joined in on the text chain.”
Even once the plot twists were revealed to the rest of the actors, they still had to be careful about spilling the beans during interviews with the press. Simpson recounts that there were certain guidelines that the showrunners made them follow, including not to lie.
“[The guidelines] were basically ‘don’t be a liar’ and ‘just get through it,’ plus a couple options, but it was more about appreciating the thought put into [the fan theories] without giving away anything in the response,” the actor said.
Season 2 of Westworld may still be a long ways away – it likely won’t arrive until 2018 – but that hasn’t stopped fans from already speculating as to what may happen on the show once it returns. And while no one can say for sure just what co-creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy have in store for us, you can bet that there will be many, many more twists to come.