The Witcher Netflix series: 2019 release date, the cast list, and everything else you need to know

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Netflix's Witcher series is in production, and it's full steam ahead. We now know that our Geralt of Rivia will be Henry Cavill (yes, Superman Henry Cavill) and that Freya Allan and Anya Chalotra will play Ciri and Yennefer. The series won't be out until 2019, but thanks so the social media sharings of showrunner Lauren Hissrich we've managed to learn a lot this new adventure for our favorite monster hunter. 

There's already a description on Netflix (freshly updated with Cavill's cast name and the new release date), describing the show as the tale of "a mutated monster hunter" who "struggles to find his place in a world where people often prove more wicked than beasts". We also know that it will be an eight episode series based on the original novels by Andrzej Sapkowski, and that Lauren Schmidt Hissrich - veteran of Daredevil, The Defenders, and The West Wing - is onboard as showrunner. And if that's not enough for you, you can read on for everything else you need to know about The Witcher Netflix series.

Fast facts:

  • The Witcher Netflix release date: 2019
  • The Witcher Netflix showrunner: Lauren Schmidt Hissrich
  • The Witcher Netflix cast: Henry Cavill, Jodhi May, Jodhi May

The Witcher Netflix series release date is 2019

After much speculation and rumour, not to mention Hissrich promising that the show will be done "as soon as humanly possible", Netflix has announced that The Witcher series is set to release sometime in 2019. The date can be seen on the show's very own official Netflix webpage, and Hissrich corroborated the newly released information in typically enthusiastic style via Twitter.

That said, it's still very early days, so no specific months or dates accompany that 2019 window as of yet, and there's a lot of work to do before The Witcher's full production kicks off sometime between now and next year. So don't expect a Spring or even Summer release for The Witcher on Netflix; we're probably looking at a late 2019 launch at best. The good things in life take time, after all. 

 The Witcher Netflix series cast list

It has been confirmed that Henry Cavill will play Geralt of Rivia. A man as famous for his portrayal of Superman in the DCEU as he is for his facial hair (and the CG removal thereof), Cavill had publicly expressed interest in the role in August 2018, telling IGN he'd "absolutely" be willing to take on the "amazing role". But plot twist: it turns out that at the time of that interview, he had already met with writer Lauren S. Hissrich, and she knew she wanted him for the part.

We know know who will be joining Cavill in the cast too. This is the full list so far, straight from the production company:

Ciri, Princess of Cintra - Freya Allan

Yennefer - Anya Chalotra

Queen Calanthe - Jodhi May

Eist -Björn Hlynur Haraldsson

Mousesack - Adam Levy

Tissaia - MyAnna Buring

Fringilla - Mimi Ndiweni

Sabrina - Therica Wilson-Read

Princess Renfri - Millie Brady 

Freya Allan and Anya Chalotra

Freya Allan and Anya Chalotra

As for the supporting cast, fans have suggestions for the most important character of them all...

 The Witcher Netflix series plot

There are a veritable library of short stories and eight novels to choose from, but we'd bet our Nilfgaardian florens that the Witcher Netflix series will focus on the saga made up of five novels, which focus on Geralt's relationship with Ciri. Writer Sapkowski has already confirmed he'll be acting as a creative consultant on the show. 

 "I’m thrilled that Netflix will be doing an adaptation of my stories, staying true to the source material and the themes that I have spent over 30 years writing," he said when the show was announced last year. 

Executive producers Sean Daniel and Jason Brown added: “The Witcher stories follow an unconventional family that comes together to fight for truth in a dangerous world. The characters are original, funny and constantly surprising and we can’t wait to bring them to life at Netflix, the perfect home for innovative storytelling."

Just recently one of the writers on the series let us know what to expect from the first episode, and it is going to be wild.

While showrunner Hissrich gave us a (slightly spoiler flavored) warning:

The Witcher Netflix series' leaked script

Casting is underway for the Netflix series, and that means scripts are out in the wild, making their way to agents and actors. Unsurprisingly, casting scripts for two Yennefer scenes have already leaked. You can see them on Reddit, but here's a little snippet.

"Really it’s about the creamy whiskers … and the way muffin crumbs get stuck there… it truly makes me want to vomit. Then there’s the creeping. Always creeping into the beds of chambermaids who do not want to clean your dick with their bodies. Creep creep creep. And on top of that, you’re very, very dumb.

"Bear in mind I have no qualms with any of that really – again, creamy whiskers. But then while talking a walk, so that I may advise your feeble mind on acts of war, you ask if you can touch my breast. The answer was a polite no thank you. But the takeaway, your highness, is that you are in the palm of my hand."

Don't worry about spoilers, Hissrich has confirmed that these are scenes written specifically for the casting process. Don't worry Witcher fans, this isn't her first rodeo. 

The Witcher Netflix series character list  

From another Hissrich Twitter thread, we got a good idea of who we could expect to see in the show, and how she sees their character. 

Geralt: "Stoic. Circumspect. Balanced. Fierce. Soft-and-squishy-in-a-tiny-place-in-his-heart-that-he'll-never-reveal-until-maybe-the-end-and-even-then-it-will-just-be-a-hint."

Yennefer: "Fiery. Proud. Shrewd. Contradictory. Seeking-to-fill-a-family-sized-hole-in-her-heart-even-though-she-resents-it-and-swears-she's-just-fine-on-her-own-but-she-is-not-and-we-love-her-for-being-both-independent-and-vulnerable."

Ciri: "Resilient. Relentless. Brazen. Growing. She's-going-to-change-the-world-and-what-the-hell-is-she-supposed-to-do-except-be-scared-and-be-bold-and-learn-and-adapt-and-find-a-family-who-can-walk-by-her-side-no-matter-what-and-maybe-just-maybe-teach-her-the-meaning-of-love."

Roach: "Ladylike. Faithful. Extrasensory. Steady. Really-annoyed-with-this-game-because-we-can’t-pretend-all-Roaches-are-the-same-so-she’d-prefer-some-singularity-and-individual-recognition-instead-of-all-being-lumped-together-by-blatantly-horsist-people."

Dandelion, known in the books as Jaskier: "Extravagant. Caddish. Loose-lipped. Loyal. Hides-behind-the-exterior-of-an-idiot-when-in-actuality-he-is-the-keeper-of-Geralt’s-realities-(even-if-he-exaggerates-his-own-heroics)-AND-the-truths-of-the-world-which-means-he’s-far-more-important-than-we-realize..."

Triss Merigold: "Spunky. Idealistic. Insecure. Conflicted. Young-and-naive-and-lacking-the-confidence-of-sorceresses-which-means-she-is-ripe-for-manipulation-but-when-she-finally-transcends-the-crap-she-has-a-chance-to-be-loved-as-herself-and-not-as-'the-third-wheel-with-Yen'"

Cahir: "Conflicted. Charismatic. Haunted. Pure of heart. Despite-being-young-he's-like-a-relic-of-a-simpler-time-when-knights-in-shining-armor-always-won-the-girl-but-now-in-the-face-of-harsh-reality-he-must-learn-what-it-means-to-actually-be-heroic-and-brave-for-others."

Regis: "Eloquent. Ensconced. Worldly. Haunted. The-worst-of-the-worst-who-transforms-into-the-best-of-the-best-or-at-least-he-strives-to-be-and-it's-the-most-incredible-journey-to-watch-as-an-evil-addicted-monster-becomes-the-essence-of-"humanity-personified"-in-the-hansa."

Vilgefortz: "Mercenary. Conspiratorial. Power-hungry. Ruthless. Handsome-as-all-get-out-which-is-important-because-(as-Geralt-says-“one-could-expect-anything-from-a-man-looking-like-this”)-he-is-the-essence-of-evil-hidden-behind-beauty-which-makes-him-very-very-dangerous."

Emhyr: "Mercenary. Conspiratorial. Power-hungry. Ruthless. Handsome-as-all-get-out-which-is-important-because-(as-Geralt-says-“one-could-expect-anything-from-a-man-looking-like-this”)-he-is-the-essence-of-evil-hidden-behind-beauty-which-makes-him-very-very-dangerous.

Milva: "Saucy. Savage. Conciliatory. Commonsense. The-epitome-of-the-novels'-shades-of-grey-who-embodies-unrequited-romance-and-also-unbelievable-strength-and-also-the-skills-to-kill-and-also-the-ability-to-crusade-for-peace-and-also-and-also-and-also."

Leo Bonhart: "Saucy. Savage. Conciliatory. Commonsense.The-epitome-of-the-novels'-shades-of-grey-who-embodies-unrequited-romance-and-also-unbelievable-strength-and-also-the-skills-to-kill-and-also-the-ability-to-crusade-for-peace-and-also-and-also-and-also."

Borch Three Jackdaws: "Perceptive. Protective. Merciful.The most beautiful. An-observer/-philosopher/-seeker-of-freedom-which-means-he-didn't-kill-just-because-he-could-but-rather-sought-to-understand-why-others-wanted-to-kill-him-which-is-EVERYTHING."