HBO Temporarily Shuts Down Production On ‘Westworld,’ But Still Hoping For 2016 Debut

HBO Temporarily Shuts Down Production On ‘Westworld,’ But Still Hoping For 2016 Debut
HBO Temporarily Shuts Down Production On ‘Westworld,’ Still Hoping 2016 Debut

Is there trouble on the horizon for HBO‘s star-studded, TV series take on Michael Crichton‘s “Westworld“? The talent is immense, with Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy running the sci-fi show which stars Ed Harris, James Marsden, Evan Rachel WoodThandie Newton, Anthony Hopkins, and Jeffrey Wright, but it seems there needs to be some retooling before this one is ready for air.

Variety reports that HBO has shut down the show, explaining that a break is needed in order to get the creative elements back on track. “As we head into the final phase of production on ‘Westworld,’ we’ve made the decision to take a brief hiatus in order to get ahead of the writing,” the network said in a statement, while clarifying to the trade that they still aim for the show to premiere this year.

READ MORE: The 25 Most Anticipated New TV Shows Of 2016

It’s another high profile effort from HBO to face problems. Last summer, the miniseries “Lewis And Clark” starring Casey Affleck and Matthias Schoenaerts was also shut down, with director John Curran (“The Painted Veil,” “Stone,” “Tracks“) and DP Rob Hardy (“Ex Machina,” “Tracks,” “Testament Of Youth“) exiting over “creative reasons.” And according to Affleck, the entire effort is being revamped from the ground up.

“The update is they are rewriting it, trying to make the scripts and the production a little bit more manageable,” he told Collider. “It was too unwieldy, they were trying to do so much, cover so many years, and it’s such a gigantic journey that it was almost impossible. It was a gigantic production that got lost control of and the seasons got ahead of them, and then they were finished. So now they’re sort of regrouping and aiming to just kind of start over again knowing what they know. It’ll be hard.” 

So, two big hurdles for HBO to overcome in 2016. We’ll see if they can do it.

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