Actor Luke Hemsworth is back in Australia to promote the new season of HBO series Westworld. Picture: Richard Dobson
Actor Luke Hemsworth is back in Australia to promote the new season of HBO series Westworld. Picture: Richard Dobson

Westworld star: ‘Every word means something’

WESTWORLD takes the concept of sticking to the script to another level.

HBO’s acclaimed sci-fi drama is incredibly complex – at times overwhelmingly so.

Set in a near-future where lifelike android hosts allow humans to indulge every and any appetite at heavily-guarded theme parks, Westworld explores the murky moral waters of artificial intelligence.

In a world where reality and consciousness are fluid concepts, the possibilities are almost endless and Westworld’s scripts continue to surprise Aussie star Luke Hemsworth, who plays security boss Ashley Stubbs.

Luke Hemsworth in a scene from Westworld. Picture: Supplied/Foxtel
Luke Hemsworth in a scene from Westworld. Picture: Supplied/Foxtel

“You don’t get that on a film – only in the medium of TV and in particular this show, where the rules of life and death are stretched. It opens up a whole world of possibilities and I think that’s where we get the joy when we get the scripts by discovering things that you just have no way of guessing,” he says.

While the hosts – led by rogue android Dolores Abernathy (Evan Rachel Wood) – may have gone off-script last season and turned on their human overlords, the show’s actors must strictly adhere to what’s written on the page.

Evan Rachel Wood’s new futuristic look as Dolores in a scene from season three of Westworld. Supplied by Foxtel
Evan Rachel Wood’s new futuristic look as Dolores in a scene from season three of Westworld. Supplied by Foxtel

“It’s quite regimented … you basically cannot change a word unless everything is discussed at depth because every word means something and has an intense flow-on effect,” Hemsworth says.

“People (fans) know everything about the show down to when Evan (as Dolores) sits and is in diagnostic mode that she puts her left hand on top of her right hand. But without that following, the show dies.”

The 38-year-old actor, older brother to film stars Chris and Liam, says avoiding spoilers is one of the hardest parts of the job.

CULVER CITY, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 26: (L-R) Liam Hemsworth, Paul Hogan and Luke Hemsworth attend the 16th annual G'Day USA Los Angeles Gala at 3LABS on January 26, 2019 in Culver City, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)
CULVER CITY, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 26: (L-R) Liam Hemsworth, Paul Hogan and Luke Hemsworth attend the 16th annual G'Day USA Los Angeles Gala at 3LABS on January 26, 2019 in Culver City, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

“I watch it with my wife and I don’t tell her anything so I get to watch her discover it,” he says. “Then we break it down … you have to debrief – I think that’s true for a lot of people. It’s a hard one to binge watch.”

Season three moves out of the confines of the park after Stubbs allowed Dolores and a handful of other hosts to escape.

“We know that when we left Stubbs he’d hinted at his past being that of perhaps being a host and he bizarrely let the hosts slip out of the park,” he says. “We get to tease that out and dive into that, which is awesome. It’s a beautiful progression for me and another level to the game. It’s something we haven’t seen before.”

So is Stubbs a human, a host or a host posing as a human? Viewers will have to tune in to find out.

Luke Hemsworth in a scene from season two of Westworld. Supplied.
Luke Hemsworth in a scene from season two of Westworld. Supplied.

“My theory is he knows about the real world and is quite comfortable in his place within it – his functionality or lack thereof,” Hemsworth says.

It can be revealed Stubbs still has some fight left in him after the devastating events at the park, with Hemsworth filming at least one key fight scene in the new season.

“I think it’s the least exciting part of the job, the action stuff,” he says. “There’s a level of full-body repetition and pain that you go through with every fight scene, and it gets old real quick. Laying yourself into a wall 15 times, regardless of how many pads you’ve got on, it just hurts.

“I get to work with Evan. She’s a legit martial artist, so we’re in safe hands with her. She’s an incredible performer, her acting is phenomenal, she can sing, what can’t she do? It’s inspirational for me having three girls of my own to see so many strong women on this show both in front of and behind the camera.”

Westworld premieres today at noon AEDT on Fox Showcase.


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