Silo is a political thriller that is set in a time where men and women live in a giant silo underground. They must put up with strict regulations because they believe they are in place to protect them from the toxic and ruined world on the surface.
When tragedy strikes, Juliette (Rebecca Ferguson) is moved from the lower levels to the top as she takes over the role of Sheriff. Tim Robbins plays Bernard in Silo, who is also unexpectedly put in a position of power. He doesn’t like Juliette from the start, but as things start to develop, he must learn to work with her.
Screen Rant spoke with Tim Robbins about Apple TV+’s Silo. He shared what drew him to the role, the importance of treating workers in the entertainment industry better, and why he thinks the series is a bit of a cautionary tale.
Tim Robbins Talks Silo
Screen Rant: This is one of those shows where the second the episode ended, I needed to start the next one and just keep going. What drew you to want to be a part of Silo?
Tim Robbins: Well, everything you just experienced. All the potential for that was always on the page. I read all the scripts, talked to Graham Yost, who took me through the journey, and where the journey might go in a season 2 or 3. I was intrigued by the part. It’s a challenging role in that it’s a character within a position of authority that has to take a tremendous burden on his shoulders in order for the silo to survive.
I was always curious about what that does to a person. What does happen to a person who compromises what might be their sense of right or wrong, for the greater good. And also, whether that is really necessary. Could it perhaps be paternalistic to think that the people won’t understand or won’t be able to deal with the truth and always find that leads to trouble and throughout history, yet, it’s repeated again and again and again, and was, unfortunately, I believe, repeated recently. And so the challenge of playing that role is in bringing sympathy and compassion for that kind of person. And I’m not sure whether he’s good or bad, still. I haven’t resolved that yet in my mind.
The other reason I wanted to do the show is because of the great cast that was assembled, and the writers are fantastic. The director, Graham Yost, the cinematographer, the designers. It was just a great team.
And the other beautiful thing about it is that we work decent hours. People on the crew got to go home and be with their kids; have dinner with their kids and come in the next day with that kind of attitude, instead of this terrible situation that happens in the States. Often, we are working 12, 14, 16 hour days — and our unions allow that. It’s in the 21st century. You gotta treat people better.
For you personally, say you were stuck in a silo, would you be like, “I gotta clean? I gotta know what’s out there?” or would you be content not exploring the truth?
Tim Robbins: It’s funny you say clean because when I was in lockdown and isolated, that’s all I did inside. I fixed stuff, I had projects. I don’t want to imagine myself in this kind of world because I will never be in this kind of world. I think we got a taste of it; a lot of us recently, and I think we all know how we felt about it. And I think we all don’t want to do that again. Particularly for the reasons that were given and how it played out. I think that if the outcome had been different, we would all have patted ourselves on the back and said, Good on us for doing what we did.
But unfortunately, I don’t think that it was something that was absolutely necessary. The scary part about it is that it happened and there were too many people that were absolutely compliant with it and still want to go back to that.
Maybe Silo will convince them that it’s not a good idea. It’s a cautionary tale. It’s written, I think, in the spirit of a great allegory that speaks about a fictional reality, but completely is relevant to today. I think it’s in the tradition of books like 1984 and Brave New World, and I think it’s an important story to tell right now. It’s entertaining. Part of it is a thriller and a murder mystery, and there’s all these different layers that play in it. Hopefully, we’ll get to do a season 2.
Silo is the story of the last ten thousand people on earth, their mile-deep home protecting them from the toxic and deadly world outside. However, no one knows when or why the silo was built and any who try to find out face fatal consequences. Rebecca Ferguson stars as Juliette, an engineer, who seeks answers about a loved one’s murder and tumbles onto a mystery that goes far deeper than she could have ever imagined, leading her to discover that if the lies don’t kill you, the truth will.
The first 2 episodes of Silo premiere May 5 on Apple TV+, with new episodes airing on Fridays.