Production on the second season of Westworld began this past summer and while viewers still have some time to wait before the series return to HBO, series star Ed Harris has shared some new behind-the-scenes details on the filming of season two. In an interview with Collider, Harris discussed the level of secrecy surrounding season two and the chaotic schedule designed to avoid the troubles that plagued the filming of season one.
While production on the first season was delayed to rework certain scripts and accommodate his stage commitments in New York, Harris stated that the creative team behind the show were better prepared for season two, having completed the scripts ahead of production. Harris added that the filming of season two has involved multiple units operating at several locations:
“So far, we’ve shot some from episode 1, episode 2, some from episode 4, some from episode 10. They’re committed to having the scripts done to shoot so we’re done by Christmas. I’m glad that I am not a person who’s trying to schedule the days of filming on this thing, because it’s insane. Sometimes you’ll have two, three different episodes being shot. Different crews, different locations; I don’t know how they get it all done.”
Harris added that the level of secrecy surrounding season two is not nearly as high as it was for year one and discussed the challenges of performing with limited information:
“Not as much — not intentionally. I think initially maybe they were [at first], which I don’t quite understand. Personally, as an actor whose done quite a bit of stage work, you know, you know was the script is. You rehearse the effin’ play for four weeks and then you do it every night and you keep it alive every night. So trust me, if I know something that has to do with my character, it’s not going to… you know.”
Of course, Harris could not provide any details of the plot for season two, though he did offer the following tease:
“So far it’s definitely intriguing. I don’t understand all that’s going on, but I know what I’m doing.”
Are you excited to see Ed Harris return as the Man in Black? Share your thoughts below!
The series stars Sir Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, Thandie Newton, Jeffrey Wright, Tessa Thompson, Sidse Babett Knudsen, Jimmi Simpson, Rodrigo Santoro, Shannon Woodward, Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Ben Barnes, Hiroyuki Sanada, Gustaf Skarsgård, Fares Fares, Betty Gabriel, Jonathan Tucker, Neil Jackson, Katja Herbers, Simon Quarterman, Angela Sarafyan, Clifton Collins, Jr., and Luke Hemsworth.
Westworld season two is expected to premiere in 2018 on HBO.
5 Ways ‘Westworld’ Could Be HBO’s Heir To ‘Game Of Thrones’
When HBO decided to make a series adaptation of the 1973 Michael Crichton film Westworld, they followed the wise words of another Crichton creation/theme park enthusiast John Hammond: They spared no expense.
It’s no coincidence the the show’s long-awaited premiere (which is earning excellent notices from critics) comes after Game of Thrones finally put in place its exit strategy. Like many groundbreaking television series (The Sopranos, Breaking Bad, Mad Men etc.), HBO announced its juggernaut fantasy drama would end after two shortened seasons, giving them (what turned out to be very necessary) breathing room to produce this expensive Western/sci-fi mashup.
HBO is in a precarious place. Several projects have run into production or money trouble recently amidst a change in management. Besides Thrones and now Westworld, HBO is coming the $100 million failure of its 1970s music drama Vinyl and only has two other dramas: True Detective and The Leftovers. The former, so insurgent in its first season, died on the vine with its second and, over a year later, a third has still not been announced. The latter, an intense meditation on grief, had two critically acclaimed seasons that were so low-rated the show is ending with its third, to air this fall.
Perhaps the biggest reason Westworld is HBO’s Next Big Thing is because the network needs it to be; nothing gets things done like tunnel vision. To that end, the show matched the material with high-minded and popular writers/producers, a cast of movie stars and beloved actors, an elaborate genre conceit befitting its budget, large and heady themes and televised cinematic storytelling on a scale rarely attempted.
In short, it did everything to flop-proof this show, with Thrones as its guide . Here are 5 ways HBO is following the Thrones model for success (Fun fact: they even share the same composer, Ramin Djawadi!)