How Secret Is Secret? Westworld’s Scripts Versus Game Of Thrones


When it comes to leaked scripts and plot information, of HBO’s two largest shows, Game of Thrones and Westworld, Westworld’s scripts take a decidedly more transparent distribution approach.

The production allows its actors to engage with the entire scope of available content while filming.

After experiencing a number of leaks and pre-episode reveals, HBO’s hit series, Game of Thrones, operates under a strict script-distribution policy, one in which many of the actors learn the full story in the same manner as the audience — across the entire season, one episode at a time.

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In fact, according to Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, who plays Jaime Lannister, actors received digital scripts that were time-sensitive, deleting themselves after a scene had been completed:

"They’re very very strict. It’s reached a crazy level this year. We actually get the scripts, and then when we’ve shot the scene — and we only have it digitally — and then when you’ve done the scene, it just vanishes. It’s like Mission: Impossible. ‘This will self-destruct.’"

With HBO’s highly-anticipated, multi-narrative Westworld halfway into its second season, the known-for-plot-twists series is throwing another curveball from behind the camera.

Despite its notoriously eager fanbase, the policy surrounding its scripts is surprisingly open. According to Westworld actor, Leonardo Lam, who plays the empathetic fan-favorite, Felix, actors were given the opportunity to understand their characters’ full story arc prior to and after filming:

Lam said that this season, they got the scripts when they came out. The cast then met at a theater in Sweetwater to reconnect. They then went through each episode, met the directors, and then did a walkthrough for the parts in Shogun World.

"“We did have a moment to reconnect and ask questions, and I think we all learned from season one how large the show is. When you’re in production and galloping off, it really does feel like that. I really did appreciate that [Jonathan] and Lisa took the time to have this moment with us to ask questions and carve out our own personal stories that we needed.”"

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Though Westworld hasn’t experienced the number of leaks that have impacted Game of Thrones, many of its essential season one plot elements were debunked, infamously, by the series’ fans and subreddit community.

However, with the ground rules from season one established, it appears that transparency was absolutely necessary to allow the actors to navigate the expansive, multi-timeline narrative of season two.