'Westworld' Season 3: Viewers Are Wondering If The Futuristic Series Accidentally Predicted Coronavirus

SPOILER ALERT: This article discusses Season 3 of HBO's Westworld. Please proceed with caution if you have not yet viewed all available episodes and wish to avoid spoilers.

Set in the future, Westworld always had viewers guessing what was going to happen next. However, some viewers are wondering if the TV series somehow managed to accurately predict the current coronavirus pandemic ahead of time, according to Inverse.

Season 3 of the sci-fi drama series saw robotic host Dolores Abernathy (Evan Rachel Wood) entering the real world of 2052, according to Collider. During this time, some scenes showed background characters wearing face masks and has led to queries as to whether or not the TV show managed to accidentally predict COVID-19 ahead of its actual appearance.

The other assumption being made is that the masks were a later addition to the series. Adding CGI masks to Season 3 after events started to unfold in the real world would add an extra layer to future events for those watching at home. However, as Inverse points out, the masks were a conscious decision made by the creators.

Jeffrey Wright as Bernard Lowe and Luke Hemsworth as Ashley Stubbs, as seen in Season 3 of HBO's 'Westworld'
HBO

As previously reported by The Inquisitr, Season 3 of Westworld was filmed in Singapore. This location was selected because it already has a futuristic look to it. However, the addition of face masks was a decision made by the show's creators because that is a somewhat normal occurrence there -- even before the advent of COVID-19.

Visual effects supervisor Jay Worth explained further.

"That's just Jonah [Nolan], Lisa [Joy], and Denise [Thé] being ahead of the times," Worth said.

"We didn't do any [digital] face masks. If you look at what's going on in Asia, some of that is normal anyway. For rioters, that can be for tear gas. To be honest, having worked on a number of futuristic shows, that's not that uncommon of a visual. It's just obviously a lot more applicable now."
In addition to the original plan, Worth explained that there was simply no time to add CGI masks, even if they hadn't been in place prior to the season airing. As will all other networks, HBO had to close down any production aspect that couldn't have social distancing rules applied to it. While some final work could still be done on Season 3, there were complications that led to final production being completed only six days ahead of airdates.

For example, Westworld actor Thandie Newton had to do final voice work from her car rather than in a studio in order to complete the final episode. So, even if HBO wanted to include additional face masks in order to make it look like they had predicted the coronavirus pandemic ahead of time, it would have been virtually impossible to complete.