‘Westworld’ Star Jimmi Simpson on Potential Season 2 Return
All is finally said and done for HBO’s Westworld, as last night’s “Bicameral Mind” finally unlocked the last major twist viewers had been anticipating. Season 2 may not arrive until 2018, but does the big reveal mean Jimmi Simpson’s time on the series is over? When does Season 2 start shooting?
You’re warned of full spoilers through Sunday’s Westworld finale from here on out, but unless you’ve been living in a cave on Mars (which could very well be where the park is located), you’ve likely learned that Jimmi Simpson’s William and Ed Harris’ Man in Black are indeed one and the same, separated by thirty years. It’s safe to say that the elder William has a role to play in Season 2's robot uprising, but does the big twist come at the cost of Simpson’s involvement with the series going forward?
Probably! Vanity Fair spoke with Simpson, who offered a pretty resolute “No”:
Are you coming back?
That’s a bummer!
I feel the same way, like gosh darn. My William has served his purpose. As of now, I’ll be done at the end of Season 1.
That said, Simpson offered a less cut-and-dry answer to The Hollywood Reporter:
Do you know yet if you will be back for season two, or has William’s story been told?
Well, you know. Nothing’s permanent. I’m not contracted to go back, but I’m sure there’s a possibility.
Do you feel there’s more to do with the character? Certainly, William kept going back to the park during all those years …
There are certainly stories they could tell. Based on these writers’ skills, if it was their intention for young William to return, I know that he would be there for solid and interesting reasons. But I think this story is told, the story of William and Dolores’ love affair. I think that story, tragically, has been told.
At the very least, Westworld has some time to sort out whether Simpson has any place in the series, as Ed Harris told Entertainment Weekly that Season 2 wouldn’t begin filming until mid-2017, apparently spending a bit more time in Utah as well:
I know we’re doing a second season. [Showrunners Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy say] we’re doing 10 episodes. Probably won’t start shooting until June or July … They have very specific plans for season 2. I think they’re gonna spend more time in Utah next season — they were there for two weeks last season, next season will be a month.
We’ve plenty of time to keep speculation on Season 2 afloat, but what does Westworld look like without the timeline twists and turns of its first season? Is there a place for young William as a figment of Dolores’ newly-activated imagination? Stay tuned for the latest.