It’s been more than two weeks since festivities of Netflix’s upcoming fantasy series The Witcher wrapped on the convention floor at Lucca, Italy. Today, we’ve gathered our favorite quotes from interviews we have not yet shared at Redanian Intelligence, including more anecdotes about star Henry Cavill and the role of the series’ themes.
Showrunner Lauren Hissrich addresses the prevalence of The Witcher’s themes
“My first goal is always to entertain the audience who will watch The Witcher. I want them to have a good time and I want them to be able to relate to these characters. It’s less about teaching and more about making sure we’re reflecting real life. So I don’t ever expect a fan or an audience member to come away with a certain ‘this was the lesson of the episode’. The best I could hope for is that they could put themselves in other people’s shoes and perhaps get out of their own life experience and think about how someone else is experiencing life.”
The showrunner on Henry Cavill
In an interview with Entertainment News, showrunner Lauren Hissrich praised star Henry Cavill for his dedication to the role of Geralt.
“He’s a dream to work with, but even more than that, and the fact that he’s a genuinely nice human being — he is absolutely obsessed with Geralt in a way I could not even fathom when we met.”
“He has so thoroughly steeped himself in this world. He’s a huge gamer and knew the games very well and then when he realized Netflix was making the show, he went and read all of the books, so he’s really a scholar of the material that’s come before us.”
“What I love is also what Henry has brought to his own Geralt. With any actor, a little piece of them comes into the role they’re playing. Henry has a stoicism to him and sort of a quiet thoughtfulness that he has instilled in Geralt.”
In the same interview, Hissrich explained the show’s themes, and their role in the story. “We tackle what would be considered sort of heavy political issues — racism, xenophobia, feminism, when to use magic, what you lose of yourself to be able to access a skill. However, the show is also really funny and fun. The show is an adventure. It has some romance. It has some violence. It has some fun, sexy moments. And I think at the end of it, you’re left thinking about what you saw, but also having thoroughly enjoyed what you saw.”
Hissrich also referred to the show’s tagline: The worst monsters are the ones we create. “That, to me, is the central core of our show. Which is, we have a world with humans and with monsters and, oddly, sometimes humans are the more monstrous creatures. One of the things we tackle a lot on the show is the simple dichotomy of good versus evil. We want to deconstruct that and show there is no simple good and there is no simple evil.”
Ciri star Freya Allan on the immersive filming experience
“People always ask me: ‘Did you have to work with a lot of green screen?’ And I really didn’t. I always felt really… [The world] was created around me, with the costumes as well. And, yeah, going onto set you really do feel like you’re in that world. It’s amazing.”
Anya Chalotra on Yennefer’s journey
Anya Chalotra, who portrays the fearsome and seductive sorceress Yennefer of Vengerberg, spoke of her character’s journey with Cinefilos. Chalotra mentions scenes in which her character is hunchbacked, before she is transformed into the powerful sorceress we know from the books.
“She is a very stubborn sorceress. The series explores her transformation from a troubled 14-year-old to an adult who has a great heart but does not accept no as an answer. At first it was very difficult, above all to [give truth] to the character during her origins and the challenges she is faced with when dealing with deformity.”
Hissrich on her meeting with author Andrzej Sapkowski
During The Witcher‘s panel at Lucca, showrunner Lauren Hissrich discussed her first meeting with series author Andrzej Sapkowski. This meeting was held in a restaurant in Poland, almost a year before filming began. These quotes were translated from an article by Movieplayer.it.
“We went to lunch together, we talked about ice fishing, his work and how I would adapt the story. We drank a little too much vodka, but I remember when we were leaving the restaurant I realized I had lunch with a star because everyone was asking for his autograph.”
During their meeting, they discussed the core of The Witcher‘s story. “Sapkowski told me what was important to him: to tell the story of three orphans looking for a place in the world, touching on topics such as sexism, xenophobia, racism, society’s difficulty in accepting what is different. Much of the original content from the books remains, full of spectacular fights, incredible adventures and monstrous creatures.”
Ciri’s Freya Allan on meeting fan expectations
“We’ve done everything we can to portray these characters as well as we can and hopefully, fingers crossed, they’ll like it.”
The Witcher launches on Netflix on December 20. If you’re interested in a look at the show’s costume exhibition, also shown at Lucca, feel free to read the picture-heavy article linked below.