Season two production is in the books, but Thandie Newton is still questioning the nature of her reality.
The 45-year-old actress stars as Sweetwater madam-turned-host on the loose Maeve on HBO’s Westworld, and if you think her character took a crazy turn in season one, season two is even more “nuts.”
“I was completely shell-shocked,” Newton told ET’s Brice Sander of her reaction to the first season two script at the series’ press day last month. “It was absolutely not what I thought was gonna happen.”
While Evan Rachel Wood revealed that fans won’t find her character, Dolores, right where they left her at the end of season one, according to Newton, Maeve will “pick up where we left off” -- on the search for her daughter and her own free will, after it was revealed that her Westworld escape may have been programmed.
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The actress couldn’t share much about the journey her character takes in season two, only to say that it’s 100 percent unexpected.
“I think that [co-creators and executive producers] Lisa [Joy] and Jonah [Nolan] have a sense of what's going to happen five seasons ahead, which is why it was such a shock to begin the next step of that journey, because it really wasn't what I expected,” Newton expressed. “As far as Maeve knows -- or we know -- she has a degree of command over what she's doing. But because I'm so flummoxed by the second season, in a really good way, it's like, I'm really paying attention now.”
“In season one, I was just emotionally like... it was like I was on a trip, like a spiritual trip with Maeve,” she continued, adding that her one burning question from season one was, “What’s Dolores going to let happen to Dolores?” -- but laughed that revealing whether she got her answer “would be giving too much away.” “Now, my brain is kicked right in with season two.”
Though filming has wrapped, and Newton admitted she’s been told “what not to say,” the actress said she actually enjoys being in the dark about Westworld’s storylines just as much as (some of) the audience.
“I have a really good relationship with Jonah and Lisa. We're friends, and I don't want them to tell me things. I like not knowing,” she shared. “I'm not one of those people that needs to know everything. As an actress, too, I don't want to be thinking about it too much ahead of time, because I've got so much else in my life, as well as being an actress.”
“People, of course, they think they want to know, but it's delayed gratification. Let's enjoy discovering it,” Newton said. “I think where we're at now with social media and access to so much information, we're addicted to finding stuff out. But there is a really beautiful feeling that comes over you if you just wait and allow it.”
“People love waiting! They do, they get excited about it. It builds up,” she added. “The anticipation is... delicious.”