It’s no surprise that a show aiming to be “the most ambitious, subversive, f—ed-up television series” (according to Jonathan Nolan, Executive Producer of HBO’s Westworld) would need to have a very comprehensive consent form. Nonetheless, a document relating to nudity and sexual content uncovered by SAG-AFTRA recently raised a lot of eyebrows. The union posted a notice on its website telling those who signed the form that it was “unenforceable,” as well as announced plans to send a representative to the set Wednesday to answer any questions.
The consent form is enough to make most people blush. Along with warnings about full nudity, the document depicts very specific (not to mention graphic) scenes background actors could potentially be required to witness or partake in. According to the form, the project will include “language and sexual situations that some may consider personally objectionable or uncomfortable.” One of the milder examples given is the possibility of being requested to “contort to form a table-like shape while being fully nude.”
After the risqué form went public, HBO responded to clarify that the document did not come from the network, its parent company, or the show’s producers. “The document that the background actors were given was created by an outside extras casting vendor,” said HBO in a statement. “It was not requested, written or approved by HBO, Warner Bros. Television, or the producers, and contains situations that we do not require of any actor. We are rectifying immediately the discrepancies in this vendor’s document with our actual on-set practices, which provide a professional and comfortable working environment for all performers.”
Even with a new form, we don’t expect the show to be watered down any; this is the network behind Game of Thrones, after all. Westworld seems likely to include even racier scenes, given that the series focuses on a Wild West theme park where automatons carry out the wild and twisted fantasies of visitors. The show stars Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, Thandie Newton, and more.
Westworld is an adaptation of a 1973 Michael Crichton film and is set to debut in 2016.