HBO’s Westworld, described as a “cross between Blade Runner and Deadwood,” has dropped its first teaser trailer and it’s messed up, but only in the best sci-fi way possible.
“Have you ever questioned the nature of your reality?”
— Indiewire (@indiewire) August 10, 2015
The question kicks us into the Westworld universe where the lines between what is real and what isn’t are blurred to the point where it’s impossible to tell the difference. Is it a dream or is it real? Are they robots or are they human? Or even worse, maybe you’re the robot.
Westworld, a show from Jonathan Nolan and J.J. Abrams, is described by HBO as a “dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the future of sin.”
— CenCom (@CenCom) August 11, 2015
The idea for Westworld sprung from the 1973 Michael Crichton movie of the same name where West World is a part of a bigger theme park where people can become a part of specific time periods, like Medieval World and Roman World, in addition to West World.
In Westworld, everything is realistic, the worlds are populated with robots, and the guests can take part in all kinds of indulgences of violence, as well as intimacy, without consequence. All is good and everyone’s having fun… that is, until the robots start to act on their own.
The movie focused on the guests who attend the theme park and what they’re faced with when all hell breaks loose. But the HBO Westworld television show will switch the focus to the robots themselves. HBO president, Michael Lombardo elaborated on the center of the Westworld story at the Television Critics Association’s press tour earlier this month.
“I think the visitors to the park are really not the primary focus of [Westworld] at all. And yeah, it resembles the film in name and spirit but really is, I think, otherwise not much of a reference point.”
All kinds of stories, from novels to film, have looked at the consequences of an artificial intelligence that becomes aware of itself and what it means to the survival of humanity — the Terminator films, for example, paint a very grim picture of our chances should that happen.
— Collider News (@ColliderNews) August 10, 2015
Steven Spielberg’s A.I. Artificial Intelligence looked at a robot who’d developed the ability to experience feelings and what that meant when it knew it wasn’t human. But Westworld takes that one step further and by creating robots who have all those feelings and think of themselves as human.
Take a look at the Westworld teaser trailer below.
Westworld will air on HBO in 2016 starring Evan Rachel Wood, Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, James Marsden, Thandie Newton, and Jeffrey Wright.
[Image courtesy HBO via Geek Tyrant]