HBO News Blog

The WESTWORLD Sex Scandal

By Jef Dinsmore on Oct 13, 2015 to Westworld


We were almost going to let this news item slip by until we realized that old news about WESTWORLD is better than no news at all. So, we revisit the reports from a week ago to give you the following information about the highly anticipated futuristic series coming in 2016.

If you don’t know what I am referring to than catch up here. It seems a casting report went out for background actors for the Michael Crichton adaptation that created quite a stir. A circulated Consent Agreement went out that stated the following:

“This document serves to inform you that this project will require you to be fully nude and/or witness others fully nude and participate in graphic sexual situations. By accepting this Project assignment, you may be required to do any of the following: appear fully nude; wear a pubic hair patch; perform genital-to-genital touching; have your genitals painted; simulate oral sex with hand-to-genital touching; contort to form a table-like shape while being fully nude; pose on all fours while others who are fully nude ride on your back; ride on someone’s back while you are both fully nude; and other assorted acts the Project may require. The Project will also include language and sexual situations that some may consider personally objectionable or uncomfortable.”


That request got the actor’s union SAG-AFTRA nervous and clarified that representatives would be present  on set to ensure everything was compliant and on the up & up. The day of shooting 50+ extras showed up along with the union and the planned scenes went on as scheduled. The producers complied with all union rules including the halt of any still photography and for a closed set when the actors went nude. However, some of the acts stated in the Consent Form were never reenacted.

In fact, HBO and its parent company stated that it had never even seen the Consent Form issued and no plans for such detailed sex acts were planned.  In a brief statement the network stated –

“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.”

For their carnal actions the extras were paid over and beyond their normal rate, but no overly explicit scenes occurred and hte company that issued the mis-worded form was dismissed. In the end SAG-AFTRA admonished HBO for handling the situation poorly. The Actors Union said –

“SAG-AFTRA sent the consent form to HBO [Tuesday] afternoon and requested that the document be changed to more accurately reflect the contractual provisions,” a union spokesperson said. “HBO had every opportunity to rectify this situation, and it was only after their direct refusal to remedy this that we posted the notice on our website. The union is very pleased to hear that HBO is doing the right thing now, but it is disappointing that we had to take such public measures to ensure compliance with our contracts and protect our background actors.”


Well come on, of course HBO dragged its heels. It is like this post; late news is better than no news and controversial promotion is better than none. This flap caused people to become a bit more aware of WESTWORLD now. You can be sure more eyes will be glued to the screen looking for naughty parts and sex acts a bit more racier than is typically seen in an HBO drama series. But are we talking sex with a synthetic automaton? Are the machines in the attraction that realistic? Don’t forget, the theme park, which includes Westworld, is designed to be a full fantasy world catering to a guest’s desires, even carnal ones.

So, does this incident leave you titillated? Alas, we got to wait to see what is revealed behind the merkins when HBO presents WESTWORLD in 2016.

(Source: Deadline)

  • Nahojism

    It seems there is indeed little to write about at this moment…

  • Maryann

    That article makes me less interested in Westworld, not more.

  • Namnoot

    I just think it’s time for HBO to be truly innovative and produce a sci-fi show that isn’t loaded with sex. Just to be different, you know? I’m sick of it myself (and I used to love sex scenes in TV shows). If anything this reaffirmed my concern that people may be pressured into doing such scenes (the fact the union got involved was a huge red flag on this point; presumably if one didn’t sign this rider, they didn’t get hired, right? So you want to work…), while at the same time causing me to decide to write the show off even though I was looking forward to it. I like Doctor Who but is it seriously going to be the only non-network sci-fi show on the air where people aren’t being shown banging away every episode? To be fair, Game of Thrones scaled it back considerably last season, but still when you have people referring to HBO as Here’s Breasts Often and you have parodies like “It’s Not Porn, It’s HBO” being circulated on YouTube, something is out of whack. And that goes for Netflix, Cinemax, FX and the others too. How about concentrating on character and plot rather than giving viewers erections (and I use the male-only term intentionally because most of this stuff appears aimed at the male libido anyway).

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