HBO’s “Westworld” Elevates The Skin Game Racket
With it’s period sets, gratuitous nudity and debauchery of both the homo and heterosexual,”The Games of Thrones” has been a ratings bonanza for HBO. People will pay and tune in for nudity. HBO is promising even more nudity in their latest projects, a made-for-cable reboot on the 1971 Yul Brynner cult classic, “Westworld.”
Westworld is a futuristic theme park where paying guests can pretend to be outlaws and gunslinger in an artificial Wild West populated by androids. In the new incarnation, machine-assisted sexual gratification will front and center with orgies and brothels staffed by robots. People will definitely tune in for that. The problem is HBO is one who didn’t initially want to pay the extras exposing that very nudity the company is counting on to attract an audience.
The show — set in a futuristic resort that offers orgies and brothels staffed by robots — is presenting background actors with a lurid waiver asking that they agree to “appear fully nude; wear a pubic-hair patch; perform genital-to-genital touching; have your genitals painted [and] simulate oral sex with hand-to-genital touching.”
The waiver also bizarrely demands that the extras be ready to “contort to form a table-like shape while being fully nude; pose on all fours while others who are fully nude ride on your back; ride on someone’s back while you are both fully nude,” according to a copy of the waiver obtained by Deadline Hollywood.
The waiver’s requirements are so far past what extras normally do, the creators of “Westworld” have jacked up the standard $157-a-day union pay rate to $600, the report said.
The shooting began Wednesday, with more than 50 extras romping on the set in “graphic sexual situations.” ~The NY Post
Yesterday, the actor’s union, SAG-AFTRA, fired back: “SAG-AFTRA sent the consent form to HBO yesterday afternoon and requested that the document be changed to more accurately reflect the contractual provisions. HBO had every opportunity to rectify this situation and it was only after their direct refusal to remedy this that we posted the notice on our website.
And HBO relented:
“The document that the background actors were given was created by an outside extras casting vendor. It was not requested, written or approved by HBO, Warner Bros. Television, or the producers, and contains situations that we do not require of any actor. We are rectifying immediately the discrepancies in this vendor’s document with our actual on-set practices, which provide a professional and comfortable working environment for all performers.”
Cable does not exist in a bubble. If HBO wants people to pay to see sex they are offering, they first must be willing to pay the actors who are performing it. It’s one thing when consumers are in the mindset sexual entertainment should be free, but the producers should known better.
At gunpoint or not, HBO paid up. Here’s a preview of “Westworld” which will be airing in 2016.