Westworld: HBO Cancels Popular Sci-Fi Drama after Season 4

HBO has decided to cancel the sci-fi drama Westworld after its recent fourth season.

The acclaimed sci-fi drama is considered finished after its recent fourth season, despite creators hoping for fifth season.


HBO has decided to cancel the sci-fi drama Westworld after its recent fourth season.

It’s an unexpected fate for a series that was once considered one of HBO’s biggest tentpoles — an acclaimed mystery-box drama that racked up 54 Emmy nominations (including a supporting actress win for Thandiwe Newton).

Last month, co-creator Jonathan Nolan said that he hoped HBO would give the series a fifth season to wrap up the show’s ambitious story, which has chronicled a robot uprising that changed the fate of humanity. “We always planned for a fifth and final season,” Nolan said. “We are still in conversations with the network. We very much hope to make them.” Co-creator Lisa Joy likewise said the series has always been working toward a specific ending: “Jonah and I have always had an ending in mind that we hope to reach. We have not quite reached it yet.”

Still, HBO — and, increasingly, other cable networks and streamers — typically like to give major series creators time to craft an ending for serialized shows as it keeps its subscribers from getting upset (see: the years-long fandom outrage after Deadwood was axed). Plus, a show that can tout a beginning, middle and end arguably increases its perceived value as a streaming and home video product compared to a title that feels unfinished.

The fourth season of Westworld wasn’t entirely a cliffhanger, however. Its final moments were rather ambiguous.

Here’s HBO’s statement: “Over the past four seasons, Lisa and Jonathan have taken viewers on a mind-bending odyssey, raising the bar at every step. We are tremendously grateful to them, along with their immensely talented cast, producers and crew, and all of our partners at Kilter Films, Bad Robot and Warner Bros. Television. It’s been a thrill to join them on this journey.”

HBO still has several tentpole dramas including the newly launched House of the Dragon along with SuccessionThe White Lotus and Euphoria, plus the upcoming zombie apocalypse thriller The Last of Us.

Also, just like the show’s frequently resurrected androids, it would be foolish to assume there will never be any more Westworld ever. If Deadwood can get a movie 12 years after the series finished, it’s always possible Westworld could likewise be, well, rebooted.