In this interview, Emily Somers chats about playing Lindsay in Season 4 of Westworld, airing on HBO.
In addition to Westworld, Emily Somers starred opposite Jean Smart in 2017’s Awaken The Shadowman, portraying Beth and has many National commercial credits under her belt.
As another fun fact, Emily studied at A.C.T. in San Francisco and the British American Drama Academy in Oxford to supplement her training at the University of California, Davis.
You can also watch the full Courageous Nerd interview with Emily Somers on YouTube, linked below. The interview has been condensed and transcribed for this article.
Could you discuss your inspirations behind becoming an actor and pursuing a professional career in the industry?
Emily Somers: So, I stumbled upon it as a kid. I was about 11 years old when I started in theatre. I was a ballet dancer and then naturally transitioned into musical theatre. From there, to theatre.
I took a trip to New York with my parents and while my Dad was working, I got to see Les Mis on Broadway. There was a little girl who was my age, up there singing.
I thought, “That looks like fun, I want to try that.” So, I signed up for a musical theatre camp when I was a little kid. My parents were really supportive and got me into it. They didn’t push me, but let me explore and see if I really liked it. I did and stuck with it ever since.
Who were the actors/actresses you most admired growing up?
Emily Somers: As a little kid, I remember I was into Jodie Foster. I would say Jodie Foster and Gwyneth Paltrow; at that time, they were doing really exciting work. The two of them, as a kid.
Christian Bale, he’s always been one I loved since I was a little kid. Yeah, I had quite a few.
Since taking the plunge and becoming a professional actor, what would you say have been the biggest learning experiences in your career?
Emily Somers: Definitely Westworld, being on set and getting to act with the rest of the cast. Watching them and how they conduct themselves when they’re not in front of the camera, as well as when they’re in front of the camera.
It really pushes you to up your game when you’re acting opposite very experienced, very talented people.
Fans of Westworld will recognise you as “Lindsay”, having appeared in two Season 4 episodes. Before booking the job, how familiar were you with the show?
Emily Somers: From the beginning, I was die-hard Season 1, like almost everyone else back in 2016. Highly anticipated it coming out and watched all of Season 1.
Then, I needed to catch up because I had binged Season 1 and had kind of fallen off. I needed to refresh with Season 2 and 3. When I was first cast, I quickly watched Season 3, so I would get the context of where the story was.
Once I ended up having more episodes and came back, I watched Season 2. It was kind of out of sync, but yeah. I really know it now because I watched every single episode leading up to doing it.
For anyone not caught up, how would you explain your character’s involvement in Westworld Season 4?
Emily Somers: I think it’s changed a bit, truly. I am an outlier, so I guess if you’ve watched Westworld, you know the theme of outliers. It was originally with the Hosts, the ones who were getting consciousness, right? They were outliers because they weren’t blindly following their loop.
In Season 4, it switched and so the humans are in their loops. The Hosts waking up to the fact they’re being programmed are outliers. I’m an outlier, whose husband was also an outlier. I’m kind of following his path; he woke up before I did.
Then, I realised that he was seeing something that really was there. He wasn’t crazy. There are the humans who are rebelling and trying to get away from the Hosts. The Hosts are trying to get to these humans, who are outliers. It’s switched from the Westworld we’re used to.
How much does having done a show like Westworld impact your resumé?
Emily Somers: That’s a great question. I think I’m still sort of discovering how that will be received. In this day and age, getting a role on anything is such a win for an actor.
It’s hard for casting and reps to know, “Okay, what was the role? How big was the role?” Now having it air and getting some of that footage will be really helpful too. The show has such a stellar reputation; it’s such a mammoth show. People respond really positively to that, which is awesome, it’s great.
Westworld‘s ensemble cast includes heavyweights such as Evan Rachel Wood, Ed Harris, Jeffrey Wright and Thandiwe Newton, to name a few. Was there anyone in particular that you wanted to meet?
Emily Somers: Oh yeah, Ed Harris, hands down. He’s such a legend and I admired him; he’s another one, from when I was a kid. You know him from a million different movies. Especially The Truman Show, which always stood out for me.
That was definitely the most nerve-wracking day. Also, it was phenomenal just to get to work with him.
Evan Rachel Wood too, I’ve admired her forever.
Are there any other upcoming projects that you can discuss at this time?
Emily Somers: Personally, I just produced, wrote and acted in this short film that’s based on a book I optioned and got the rights to. We just wrapped a couple of weeks ago. We filmed in Northern California, in the Sacramento area.
Then, I have a recurring role coming up on an Apple TV+ show that we’re going to start filming in the next month. Right now is that sweet little in-between spot where I finish one, watch Westworld and work on the next one.
In a wider sense, what are your goals for the rest of 2022 and going forward?
Emily Somers: One, just to keep working, just the boring answer. Going from project to project would be a great goal.
We did this short film and the goal was to get interest for the feature film. We kind of took 20 minutes out of the feature to make the short. I have the script for the feature film.
My huge goal is to get that edited and out into the world. Then, get someone attached to make the feature film. That’s the big one.
It’s sort of the standard now, I feel like. If you want to make an indie film, it’s one good way of going about getting funding for the feature film.
So, we’ll see, fingers crossed.