‘Westworld’ Shocker: HBO Cancels The Series Ahead Of Season 5

'Westworld' has come to an end. HBO announced on November 4 that the show would be ending after 4 seasons, and season 5 would not be happening.

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Image Credit: Kristin Callahan/Everett Collection

Westworld was one of the biggest shows in HBO’s history when it premiered in October 2016, but now its reign is over. The neo-Western science-fiction series earned a whopping 54 Primetime Emmy Awards nominations and won 7 across four seasons. Season 4 premiered in June 2022 and concluded two months later, leaving fans wanting more from the show. However, HBO has axed Westworld after 4 seasons.

HBO announced on November 4 that there would be no Westworld season 5. “Over the past four seasons, Lisa [Joy] and Jonah [Nolan] have taken viewers on a mind-bending odyssey, raising the bar at every step. We are tremendously grateful to them, along with their immensely talented cast, producers, and crew, and all of our partners at Kilter Films, Bad Robot, and Warner Bros. Television. It’s been a thrill to join them on this journey,” HBO said in a statement. 

Westworld
Evan Rachel Wood in ‘Westworld’ (Photo: Kristin Callahan/Everett Collection)

The creators had previously addressed the future of Westworld at New York Comic Con 2022. “We always planned for a fifth and final season,” Jonathan said, according to Deadline. “We are still in conversations with the network. We very much hope to make them,” he added. Lisa previously told Deadline that she and Jonathan “have always had an ending in mind that we hope to reach. We have not quite reached it yet.”

Why Was Westworld Cancelled?

A “multitude of factors” went into the decision to cancel Westworld, according to Variety. This included “the production’s hefty price tag, combined with dwindling viewership and an ongoing evaluation of programming across the board at HBO’s new parent, Warner Bros. Discovery.”

Kilter Films also released a statement about the show ending, “Making Westworld has been one of the highlights of our careers. We are deeply grateful to our extraordinary cast and crew for creating these indelible characters and brilliant worlds. We’ve been privileged to tell these stories about the future of consciousness – both human and beyond – in the brief window of time before our AI overlords forbid us from doing so.”

Westworld
James Marsden and Evan Rachel Wood in ‘Westworld’ (Photo: John Johnson/HBO)

Season 4 Recap

Westworld season 4 was well-received by fans and critics, following two subpar seasons of the show. The season ended perfectly for season 5 to be the final installment of the show. Dolores is sent through the Sublime to see if humanity and hosts can live together. Dolores returns to restart life and the show is essentially back to where it started. William becomes the Man in Black again and wants to turn all humans against each other. Host William, Host Caleb, Clementine, Stubbs, and Charlotte Hale all die by the end of season 4. But everyone could come back since Dolores basically reset everything. Frankie is one of the last humans standing and she leaves the city for refuge.

Westworld
Westworld (Photo: John Johnson/HBO)

Westworld Cast

The main cast from season 4 featured Evan Rachel Wood, Tessa Thompson, Thandiwe Newton, Jeffrey Wright, Aaron Paul, James Marsden, Ed Harris,  Luke Hemsworth, and Aurora Perrineau. Thandiwe notably won the Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series back in 2018.

What Fans Want To See Happen in Season 5

There were some loose ends that needed to be tied up in Westworld season 5. Dolores went back to where everything started at the end of season 4, so the next season would have probably returned to the western theme park from season 1.

Creator Lisa Joy teased some of the season 5 plot and Dolores’ pivotal role in an interview with The Wrap after the season 4 finale. “You know, we always thought that Westworld should kind of come full circle and back to the West. But with Dolores, who was just a player in other people’s games, finally getting to write her own. Just to close up a lot of the stuff that we’ve seen before like the flashforward with The Man in Black and everything, so we have a plan for Season 5 – but, you know, life can make other plans for you. So we’ll just hope for the best,” she said.

Westworld
Aaron Paul (Photo: John Johnson/HBO)

Lisa added, “It’s not an accident that they’re returning to the west, as Westworld, and this time with a completely different storyteller in charge. I think point of view can change drastically the meaning of any kind of story or existence, and now it’s her turn. How often do you get to see the damsel in distress become the leader of a society? Somebody who went through what she did – I mean, look at our world now. How often does that happen and who holds power in most civilizations? It’s not a person or creature like Dolores. She was a ‘thing’ to people. She lived through countless lives and reboots where she was at the mercy of guests in a park, indulging in their vices and id. She’s seen a lot of human nature, and maybe enough to know how to structure something or give a game in which some kind of hope for it might emerge.”

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