HBO is known for its prestige dramas, the sheen of critical acclaim burnishing the artistic output of its sundry productions. So, naturally, it’s adapting a Michael Crichton movie about a theme park overtaken by killer cowboy robots. Since the pilot was ordered to series last fall, actor Miranda Otto has hopped on her horse and ridden off into the sunset, “the sunset” here meaning “a guest arc on season five of Homeland.” Thus, Westworld has sent its robotic killers out to round up a replacement for Otto, picking up a bevy of additional actors in the process. Deadline reports that, in addition to a trio of new actors, HBO has cast Borgen star Sidse Babbett Knudsen in Otto’s former role.
Knudsen is taking over the character of Theresa Cullen, operations head of Westworld, who will clearly be doing a great job given the story revolves around everything going to hell. The other newcomers include Eion Bailey, who spent the past few years playing August W. Booth on ABC’s Once Upon A Time but will now get to be on a show about a dystopian fantasy land. He’s playing Logan, a “self-indulgent ladies man who is a return visitor to Westworld.” Accompanying Logan is Westworld newbie William, played by House Of Cards’ Jimmi Simpson, going from playing a troubled tech geek to a geek surrounded by troubled tech.
The last new name announced is Clifton Collins Jr., one of the many people who can lay claim to the title of “that guy you know from that thing,” but whom for us will always be one-half of the Vegan Police. He’s taking the role of Lawrence, a “sly criminal who really knows his way around Westworld.” Of course, Westworld isn’t scheduled to air until sometime in 2016, so all these people will have plenty of time to get hazed by the actors previously cast on the show, including James Marsden, Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, Thandie Newton, and Jeffrey Wright. Presumably, this will involve lots of good-natured ribbing about robots, cowboys, the combination of the two, and sick burns on Cowboys & Aliens.