SINGAPORE — Orchard Road, The Pinnacle@Duxton, and the Helix Bridge - these are some of the many familiar sights in Singapore you would have come across if you caught the first episode of Season 3 of Westworld that aired this Monday (16 March).
We’ve watched advance screeners of the first four episodes of the season, and we can tell you that there are a lot of shots of scenes in Singapore in most of the episodes. So much so that it’s basically a huge tourism advertisement for Singapore. Having assisted the production of Westworld here, the Singapore Tourism Board and Infocomm Media Development Authority must be very happy with the priceless exposure.
The first episode features more than 10 places in Singapore alone. Here’s actor Aaron Paul strolling down Orchard Road (see the Isetan logo on the building?) Scroll on down to see the other places featured in the show.
Set in Los Angeles in 2058, the main shooting locations for the HBO series this season are real-life Los Angeles and Singapore, with the city-state being used as a backdrop to provide futuristic settings for the characters.
One of the show’s creators, Lisa Joy, told Yahoo Lifestyle SEA in a previous interview that they picked Singapore to film in because the city looks so futuristic and beautiful, and had managed to incorporate nature and greenery in a lot of its architecture.
Season 1 of Westworld introduced us to a theme park in the future where humans could act out fantasies while interacting with robots, or artificial intelligence entities, made to resemble humans. In Season 2, the robots, called “hosts”, revolted and some managed to escape into the real world, which brings us to Season 3. Evan Rachel Woods, who plays host Dolores, pairs up with Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul, who plays Caleb, a human disgruntled by AI technology, in her fight against human oppressors.
According to HBO, the full list of Singapore locations featured in Season 3 include, in alphabetical order: Atlas Bar, Chinatown (Food Street), Esplanade Park, Helix Bridge, LASALLE College of the Arts, Marina One, Marina Coast Expressway, National Gallery Singapore, Oasia Hotel Downtown, Orchard Road, Parkroyal on Pickering hotel, Pulau Ubin, Robinson Road, School of the Arts, and Stadium MRT station.
Aaron Paul said of his stay in Singapore while filming, “There’s not another place in the world like it. It’s like taking a plane ride into the future. It’s the cleanest place I’ve ever been to in my life. The people are amazing. The food was out of control. I loved getting lost in the landscapes, kind of walking around.”
A few actors based in Singapore were featured in the show too: Tuen Wai Meng (128 Circle, Neighbours), Salif Hardie (Lion Mums 3, Azam dan Johan), Nikki Muller (Sent, FAM), Cheryl Chitty Tan (Faculty, Derek) and Bobby Tonelli (Fighting Spiders, Cages).
Yahoo Lifestyle SEA spoke to Muller, who appears in an upcoming episode opposite main stars Wood and Paul. The Swiss national, who has been based in Singapore for nine years as a host and actress, said, “Singapore is a wonderful hub of creatives from all around the world. And the fact that you can organise shoots of this size for a production of this quality and calibre, and you can do it seamlessly with people coming together, I think that makes Singapore very attractive.”
We’ll try and keep this article as spoiler-free as possible while we give you a peek below at the Singapore locations featured in Episode 1. Subsequent episodes premiere every Monday at the same time as the US at 9am (Singapore time) on HBO GO and HBO, with an encore telecast at 9pm on HBO.
Here are some screenshots below: