J.J. Abrams Brings Westworld TV Series Closer


There is, as they say, nothing new under the sun. But that doesn’t mean that things can’t change. Many an eye may have rolled at the thought of J.J. Abrams creating a TV show from the concept of Westworld, but let’s not rush to judgement. It is beginning to sound as though a fresh set of eyes – those talented Abrams eyes, specifically – might just deliver a re-imagining beyond our wildest dreams.

The original Westworld movie was written and directed by Michael Crichton in 1973, and featured a western-themed amusement park, operated by humanoid robots that malfunction, and get out of hand. It was hugely successful, and in 1980, Crichton created a TV show based on the same concept – but it only ran for 5 episodes.

All had been quiet since then, until J.J. Abrams and Jonah Nolan began developing a Westworld TV show for Bad Robot and Warner Bros TV. The pilot is written by Nolan and Lisa Joy, with Nolan in the director’s chair. Abrams, Bryan Burk and Jerry Weintraub are executive producing, and the production describes the show as “a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the future of sin.”

According to Film Divider, the creative team behind the new project will be using the central concept of the film as a loose base, but will take the idea in a new direction, with a new perspective, having the focus be on the robots, rather than the guests. Academy Award winner Sir Anthony Hopkins (Thor) has apparently been approached for the role of Dr. Ford – the man behind the park – while James Marsden (X-Men) and Evan Rachel Wood (The Ides Of March) are considering the roles of the lead robots. The role with no name attached as yet is that of The Man In Black – a guest who visits the park regularly to let off steam by brutalizing the robots.

It all sounds like dark and harrowing stuff, and if these actors sign on, we could be in for something really quite interesting on our small screens. There is no estimation of production timescales yet, but this is the closest this project has ever made it to the finish line, so things are certainly looking up for Westworld.

Source: The Playlist