Anthony Hopkins' Westworld is coming to HBO

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Anthony Hopkins and Ed Harris will lead the cast of HBO's upcoming drama series Westworld to air next year, Time Warner's cable network said on Monday.

Westworld, based on the 1973 film of the same name directed by Michael Crichton, will be executively produced by J.J. Abrams, Jerry Weintraub and Bryan Burk, while Interstellar co-writer Jonathan Nolan will pen the one-hour episodes.

HBO did not confirm how many episodes the show will include, or an exact air date.

While Crichton's film explored a futuristic adult amusement park thrown into chaos after a robot malfunction, the HBO series is described as "a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the future of sin."

Westworld will also star Thandie Newton, Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, Shannon Woodward, Ingrid Bolso Berdal and Simon Quarterman.

The Hollywood Reporter, calling Westworld "TV's hottest project", said stars were flocking to the series even though most of them will play robots.

The robots can be killed off and return with completely different personas, allowing actors to play many characters in the same season, the trade paper added.

Oscar winner Hopkins, of Silence Of The Lambs (1991) fame, will play an inventor who runs an adult amusement park populated by lifelike robots, it says.

Hopkins, 76, starred previously in TV films including War And Peace (1972) and Great Expectations (1989).

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