On July 1, the growing community of Witcher fans was served a sizeable meal in the form of posters, quotes, and a marketing extravaganza – as well as the reveal of an upcoming Comic Con panel on July 19. However, in among the jaw-dropping posters, even more information was provided on The Witcher’s robust cast – including some casting news that is exclusive to Redanian Intelligence.
Emma Appleton is now officially Renfri
First things first, Netflix has published a new press release on their website which sneakily includes the long-rumored actress Emma Appleton, who was first reported by Redanian Intelligence as our potential replacement for Princess Renfri. We can now rest easy, as Emma has been officially confirmed as the Pilot’s femme-fatale. We can also rest easy now that Lars Mikkelsen is still mentioned on that cast list as sorcerer Stregobor, meaning he has survived the Pilot’s barrage of recastings. A name that is missing from this list is Packy Lee, who we suspect is the show’s replacement for Shane Attwooll’s Nohorn. Hopefully our friends at TheWitcher.TV will be able to get the confirmation soon! Next up, we have two new cast members.
United Agents, the agency that represents a good portion of The Witcher’s cast, were quick to congratulate the show for its most recent reveals. In their tweet (seen above) they also congratulated their own clients, including some actors who were long confirmed, some who were known but unconfirmed, and some who are completely new to fans. We’ll begin by welcoming a well-known new cast member.
Related article: First-look Posters and Character Stills for The Witcher
Our first new cast member is Ella-Rae Smith, who previously starred in AMC’s Into The Badlands. This particular actress is one we’ve had our eye on for a while, as she shares a follow with casting director Sophie Holland (as well as a couple of other cast and crew), but we believed it could well be coincidence. It wasn’t! Ella-Rae’s role in the show is as yet unknown, but Redanian Intelligence will be checking in with our sources, so hopefully we’ll learn who she plays soon. In the meantime, all we can do is speculate. In my humble opinion, Ella-Rae has the perfect look for a dryad of Brokilon, and I could see her playing either Queen Eithné or the young dryad Braenn (both of whom are important and missing an actress, still).
Our second new reveal courtesy of United Agents is actress Anna-Louise Plowman, whose résumé includes Black Sails, Doctor Who and Stargate SG-1. Unlike Ella-Rae, she is entirely new to us, and nothing about the show is on her CV. It’s possible Anna-Louise is one of the as-yet unidentified sorceresses from the filming in Poland (there were two in particular who look similar to her), but she could also be an unrelated character.
In addition to these castings, United Agents confirmed two actors who were previously unveiled by the Redanian Intelligence team before our website came to be. The first is actress Isobel Laidler, who filmed a very interesting scene with our Yennefer, Anya Chalotra, in the Canary Islands. During the scene in question, Yennefer defends Isobel’s character from another mage or witchhunter played by Polish actor Marcin Czarnik. Both Isobel and Marcin’s roles remain unknown, yet it seems quite likely they are playing original characters rather than established ones. Also confirmed by United Agents is actor Jim Caesar, who filmed for the season finale’s mage-heavy battle sequence. Though his character is, too, unknown, the assumption that he is playing a mage is a rather safe bet.
Next up, the Redanian Intelligence team is proud to present a couple of unannounced cast members who we’ve uncovered from the very depths of the internet.
Jade Croot, who appears to be Princess Adda
According to her Spotlight CV, young actress Jade Croot will be playing the character Princess Adelaide. Adelaide certainly seems close enough to Adda, who happens to be the only other princess we can think of in the material adapted for The Witcher’s first season.
As a reminder, Princess Adda is a pivotal character in Andrzej Sapkowski’s first short story (and the first entry to release in the Witcher Saga), which will be covered in the show’s third episode. Adda is a princess who suffers a curse, and is transformed into a ruthless monster called a Striga. Naturally, Henry Cavill’s Geralt will have to take care of that curse … but, this time, ideally without killing the monster. Why not list her as Adda right away? It’s possible Adda will be used as an abbreviation of Adelaide, or that Netflix attempted to be secretive on her CV. Using similar-sounding names to keep roles secret is a strategy that has been employed by the team in the past. Another option is that she is not Adda, but a new character. In fact, it seems Jade lists director Alik Sakharov on her CV which aligns with the directors on set when she filmed. The striga episode, which Adda would naturally be involved in, is almost certainly going to be directed by Alex Garcia Lopez. That throws a bit of a wrench in our speculation, but we’d be remiss not to make a note of the name and age similarities.
It’s also worth mentioning a couple of remote possibilities, keeping with the theme of similar names. Also not far off “Adelaide” are Adela, one of the Houtborg Triplets, and Adalia, Queen Calanthe’s mother. They play an important part in the lore of the Elder Blood, so, if flashbacks happen, they aren’t entirely out of the question as possibilities.
Howard Chadwick as ‘Chubby Merchant’
You heard it here first! Netflix’s The Witcher has finally revealed its “chubby merchant”, who will be played by actor Howard Chadwick. Given that his Spotlight CV mentions director Alik Sakharov, who helms the Pilot, and because the climactic fight scene in the short story “The Lesser Evil” (on which the Pilot is based) takes place in a busy marketplace … we can only pray, and hope, to see this plump salesman survive the episode’s violent clash (and appear in several other episodes).
And three more actors on our radar…
Seeing as we were accurate on Emma Appleton, and because we were quick to shrug off Ella-Rae Smith‘s connections as a mere coincidence, we want to round up a few names on our watchlist. Keep in mind, none of these actors are confirmed for The Witcher, but they may well be part of the cast.
First, we have Robert Ewens, who mentions on his Spotlight CV that he has a recurring role in a new Netflix series, yet neglects to mention the series in question (possibly because of an NDA). It is equally possible that the Netflix show in question is The Stranger (where he stars alongside Witcher castmembers Ella-Rae Smith and Shaun Dooley), yet that wouldn’t explain the secrecy in his spotlight profile.
Next up is actress Kate Magowan, also represented by United Agents but missing from their recent tweet. We first ran into Kate when she followed Henry Cavill and showrunner Lauren Hissrich at the same time (a good indication, but still far from confirmed). Other than Lauren and Henry, Kate has exchanged follows with Shaun Dooley and Jason Thorpe (who are both involved in the Adda episode, playing King Foltest and Lord Ostrit respectively). It’s possible these follows are coincidental, as her absence from United Agents’ recent tweet could be seen as proof she is not in the cast. If we could cast her as any Witcher character, however, our choice would be Philippa Eilhart.
Next up is two-time Oscar nominee Mary McDonnell. Mary is famous for her role in Battlestar Galactica. She has exchanged follows with showrunner Lauren Hissrich on twitter, and also follows The Witcher video game’s page. Though the connection may be weak, it’s possible Mary has been contacted as part of the casting process for season two, which may have already begun. If so, we’d love to see her as Melitele’s priestess Nenneke.
And that’s it for now. Stay tuned into Redanian Intelligence as we search for the remaining cast members of The Witcher (including fan favorites Borch, Eithné, and Braenn). If we find them, you’ll be the first to know! Also coming very soon, as mentioned, is San Diego Comic Con, where the cast’s first live panel will come together on July 19.