12:30pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
Thandie Newton Boards HBO's 'Westworld'
HBO's Westworld adaptation continues to flush out its stellar cast.
Rogue star Thandie Newton has boarded the premium cable network's adaptation of the sci-fi hit, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Inspired by Michael Crichton's 1973 feature film, the drama is billed as a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the future of sin.
Newton (Crash) will play Maeve Millay, a beautiful and razor-sharp woman with a genius for reading people and a knack for survival. Maeve is the Westworld madame whose seen-it-all-before worldview is about to be truly challenged.
She joins a cast that includes Anthony Hopkins, Evan Rachel Wood,Ed Harris, Jeffrey Wright, Rodrigo Santoro, Shannon Woodward, James Marsden, Kyle Bornheimer and more. Production on the pilot begins this month.
J.J. Abrams will executive produce alongside veteran producer Jerry Weintraub and Bad Robot's Bryan Burk. Person of Interest's Jonathan Nolan, who co-wrote the pilot, will executive produce and direct as well. Lisa Joy co-created the drama and co-wrote the pilot and will also exec produce. Kathy Lingg will co-executive produce and Athena Wickham is a producer on the Warner Bros. Television drama. David Coatsworth is set as a co-executive producer and line producer, with Susie Ekins set as a co-producer.
The news comes a day after satellite TV provider DirecTV renewed its original cop drama Rogue for a supersized third season of 20 episodes — with production starting in January on the first 10 to air in spring 2015 and the second half in 2016. It's unclear how Newton, who is the singular lead on the series, would juggle both should Westworld earn a likely series order.
Newton is repped by WME, Untitled and Independent Group in the U.K.