Entertainment

Everything We Know About Netflix's 'The Witcher' Prequel

Netflix is creating a 'Witcher' cinematic universe with 'The Witcher: Blood Origin.'

the witcher
Katalin Vermes, Netflix

With the roaring success of The Witcher, Netflix's series based on the bestselling Polish fantasy novels that have already inspired three video games, it was only a matter of time before the streaming service capitalized on viewers' love for all things Geralt of Rivia. There's already an anime series in the works, as well as a second season of the main show, and Netflix has also announced that they're working on a prequel series, titled The Witcher: Blood Origin, which will tell the story of the Continent's very first Witcher. Here is everything we know about it so far: 

When is The Witcher: Blood Origin coming out?

Netflix first announced the show in July of 2020, but given the complex state of filming anything these days, it's taken a while for them to get started. Netflix hasn't set a release date yet for Blood Origin, but production could start sometime in 2021. That means either a late 2021 or early-to-mid 2022 release date. Considering it's also working on a second season of The Witcher flagship series, it could be a bit of a wait. Plenty of time to rewatch the first season of The Witcher ten more times….

What is the plot?

The official summary of the limited series is as follows: "Set in an elven world 1,200 years before the world of The Witcher, Blood Origin will tell a story lost to time—the origin of the very first Witcher, and the events that lead to the pivotal 'conjunction of the spheres,' when the worlds of monsters, men, and elves merged to become one."

The world of The Witcher, set on a landmass known as "the Continent," used to be separated into a few distinct realms, or parallel universes, home to many different sentient races. During the Conjunction of the Spheres, the worlds were all mashed together into one, bringing elves and monsters and magic into the world of humanity. The very first Witcher was created (as Geralt of Rivia was created) to hunt down and kill the unnatural monsters from these other worlds that terrorize the people of the Continent. 

Who is in the cast?

Jodie Turner-Smith, who had a starring role in 2019's Queen & Slim and as Melantha Jhirl in Netflix's George R.R. Martin adaptation Nightflyers, will be playing Éile, "an elite warrior blessed with the voice of a goddess," who quit her job as the Queen's bodyguard in order to pursue a nomadic music career until a catastrophe on the Continent calls her back to service. Vikings actor Laurence O'Fuarain has also joined the cast as Fjall, a warrior and king's bodyguard who's seeking redemption from a tragedy in his past, after losing a loved one who died to save him. 

You might also remember that Jason Momoa was rumored to have joined the cast, with the actor even posting fanart of himself in costume next to Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia, but that rumor hasn't been confirmed. Fingers crossed! (Cavill, obviously, will not star in this prequel series.) 

Who else is involved? 

Lauren Schmidt Hissrich, the showrunner of The Witcher, will be an executive producer; Declan de Barra, who wrote, produced, and even contributed his singing talents to a few episodes of The Witcher, will showrun this miniseries; and Andrzej Sapkowski, the author of the book series The Witcher is based on, will be a creative consultant.

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Emma Stefansky is a staff entertainment writer at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter @stefabsky.
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