Sky Atlantic's Westworld: Meet the main characters...
Sky Atlantic brings HBO’s latest goldstandard series to the UK as Westworld, the dark odyssey from JJ Abrams and Jonathan Nolan and starring an A-list cast including Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, James Marsden, Evan Rachel Wood and Thandie Newton, arrives.
The Old West has lived on in our collective consciousness as a place of lawlessness, greed and, most of all, freedom. As technology moves forward, and our civil liberties and privacy appear to be increasingly monitored, imagine you could, for the price of admission, go back to the American Frontier to live out your fantasies – be they noble and idealised, or dark and depraved. In the near future, this is exactly what the hedonistic Westworld offers. Patrons can indulge any human appetite by living out their deepest desires through the synthetic denizens within. Controlled by the most advanced artificial intelligence developed, you’re not going to believe they’re not real. In fact, they don’t believe it either.
Here, we introduce you to the main characters from the show...
DOLORES (ABERNATHY EVAN RACHEL WOOD)
An innocent prairie girl and local beauty who lives with her father, Dolores has romantic feelings for Teddy Flood, but is about to discover that what she believes to be her life is actually an elaborately constructed lie.
Evan says: “Dolores is the quintessential prairie girl, but she’s also a farm girl, a cowgirl – she’s smart and witty and tough. And if you’re considering the park a game, in which there are different levels, Dolores is going to be slightly more work than going to the brothel, but she’s the one that you can fall in love with.”
MAEVE MILLAY (THANDIE NEWTON)
The quick-tongued madam who runs Westworld’s brothel, clad in corsets and feathers, Maeve is a long-serving host, and a survivor who does not suffer fools. But her seen-it-all attitude is soon to be challenged.
Thandie says: “There is a lot of violence in Westworld, a lot of depravity. And me, playing a prostitute? I had my reservations. But the whole point is to shock us into the awareness that this is what we do to each other. You have to establish the depravity, so you can then comment on it. And this is violence between humans and robots, who can just be reprogrammed and patched up, and turned off; real people can’t be reprogrammed and patched up and turned off.”
TEDDY FLOOD (JAMES MARSDEN)
A handsome young gunslinger, and a new arrival in town, sharp-shooting Teddy shares some history with Dolores, but his motivations for being in Westworld remain a mystery.
James says: “Unlike other guests, who mainly head to Westworld to immerse themselves in the debauchery of the town, Teddy sees this woman – Dolores – who represents everything that he wants in life. He has a dark past that he’s trying to put behind him, and she’s a beacon of light for him, representing purity and innocence and goodness, qualities that he wants to bring out in himself. But he’s also very good with a gun – in fact, he’s lethal when he needs to be.”
THE MAN IN BLACK (ED HARRIS)
Billed as ‘the distillation of pure villainy into one man’, the leather-gloved, gun-toting enigma is central to the conflict brewing between the hosts of Westworld and their creator and mastermind, Dr Ford, and his team.
Ed says: “He has been coming to the park for 30 years, so he is a man of means. And he obviously has a penchant for, or is at least exploring, this violent and ‘evil’ side of himself. He enjoys what he can do in this place; there’s a part of him that gets off on it, and, as he sees it, he’s not killing humans – as human as they seem, the hosts get patched up and they get sent back out again.”
DR ROBERT FORD (ANTHONY HOPKINS)
The visionary creative director of Westworld and the robots who serve as its hosts, Dr Ford also serves as the chief programmer and chairman of the board. His talent for creating convincingly human-like androids is paired with an uncompromising plan for the park, and unorthodox means of achieving it.
Anthony says: “Dr Ford is a control freak on a gigantic scale – he controls everything and he wants to perfect everything. Which means he’s mad. Personally, I’ve never been interested in control. I think most of our pain comes from trying to control everything. Or trying to dominate other people and ourselves, terrorising others and ourselves. I don’t want to control anyone, ever, and I’ve fought back against people who have tried to control me.”
Westworld premieres Tuesday October 4th at 9pm on Sky Atlantic.