Geralt of Rivia is coming to Netflix, with Henry Cavill now set to star in a TV show based on The Witcher. Originally starting life as a series of fantasy novels by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski, The Witcher franchise is now best known by the series of action-adventure video games by CD Project Red. The TV show was developed by Daredevil and The Defenders writer and executive producer Lauren Schmidt Hissrich, and will kick off with an 8-episode first season.
Described as "an epic tale of fate and family," the TV show will follow Geralt, a member of an elite breed of monster-hunters called Witchers, who undergo brutal training and genetic modification from a young age in order to hone their skills as warriors. The franchise is set in a medieval world filled with elves, dwarves, witches, and all manner of monsters. Here's everything we know about The Witcher TV show so far.
- Title: The Witcher
- Cast: Henry Cavill
- Showrunner: Lauren Schmidt Hissrich
- Directors: Alik Sakharov (four episodes including pilot), Alex Garcia Lopez (two episodes), Charlotte Brändström (two episodes)
- Number of episodes: 8
Last updated: September 4, 2018
The Witcher Will Star Henry Cavill as Geralt
On September 4, 2018, Netflix announced that Man of Steel and Mission: Impossible - Fallout star Henry Cavill had been cast in The Witcher's lead role. Cavill is a British actor who first rose to fame thanks to his role in historical TV series The Tudors, and was later cast as Superman in the DC Extended Universe, playing Clark Kent in Man of Steel, Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League. The Witcher won't be Cavill's first Netflix Original, as last year he appeared in Netflix's war drama Sand Castle.
Hissrich said that Cavill has been in her sights to play Geralt from a very earlier stage, explaining on Twitter: "He was my first meeting. I didn’t have writers or scripts yet – just a greenlight and a lot of passion." The press release announcing Cavill's casting said that he is a "massive fan" of the Witcher novels, so playing Geralt must be a dream come true.
The Witcher Will Be Casting Yennefer, Ciri, Triss and More
Based on the series synopsis, it looks like Geralt, Yennefer of Vengerberg and Ciri will be the main focus of the series, but Hissrich posted a Twitter thread in which she revealed all 12 characters who will be featured in the show, along with their personality traits. In addition to the three mentioned above, The Witcher will also include Geralt's faithful horse, Roach, his flamboyant bard friend Jaskier (known as Dandelion in the games), feisty witch Triss Merigold, noble knight Cahir, reformed vampire Regis, wicked and powerful sorcerer Vilgefortz, ruthless ruler Emperor Emhyr var Emreis, a "saucy" and "savage" archer called Milva, cold-blooded bounty hunter Leo Bonhart, and Villentretenmerth, a dragon with the ability to take human form. So far, Cavill is the only actor who has been cast in the series.
The Witcher TV Show's Official Synopsis
The Witcher is still in pre-production, but all eight episodes have now been written and an official logline was released alongside the announcement of Cavill's casting:
Based on the best-selling fantasy series, The Witcher is an epic tale of fate and family. Geralt of Rivia, a solitary monster hunter, struggles to find his place in a world where people often prove more wicked than beasts. But when destiny hurtles him toward a powerful sorceress, and a young princess with a dangerous secret, the three must learn to navigate the increasingly volatile Continent together.
The "powerful sorceress" mentioned is surely Yennefer of Vengerberg and the "young princess" can only be Ciri, so for fans of the video games it seems that The Witcher TV show will be along the same lines as the third and final game: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt.
The Witcher Will Be Based on Both the Books And the Video Games
The Witcher spans short stories, novels and video games, and has already been adapted into a Polish live-action film and TV series titled The Hexer. Netflix's TV show will draw inspiration from both Andrzej Sapkowski's original books and CD Projekt Red's video games. Executive producer Tomasz Bagiński explained last year that the creators of the show will "look for their own path," but also that "there will be some similarities with CDPR’s take on the White Wolf." Since the TV show will have to draw in new audiences, as well as existing fans of the books and games, it's safe to assume that we'll get some kind of origin story for Geralt and an introduction to the world that he inhabits.
The Witcher Doesn't Have a Premiere Date Yet
Back in April, Hissrich responded on Twitter to questions of when The Witcher would premiere with "2020. Who knows?!" - and since then a premiere date for The Witcher TV show still has yet to be announced. With Cavill now cast in the lead role, casting will surely continue throughout this fall and it could be mere months before The Witcher begins filming (production will take place in Eastern Europe), so it could feasibly arrive on Netflix in the second half of 2020.
The Witcher Doesn't Have a Trailer Or Poster Yet
It's still early days for The Witcher, so there's no trailer or poster for the TV show yet. However, BossLogic did create this awesome fan art of Cavill as Geralt of Rivia:
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