The Witcher prequel Blood Origin starring Michelle Yeoh, Minnie Driver, Lenny Henry, Sophia Brown, and Laurence O’Fuarain among others drops on Christmas Day 2022 with four meaty episodes. Not many details of the plot have been revealed so far, but showrunner Declan de Barra in an interview with Tudum gave us some interesting insights into the plot.
An elven society at its peak
The Witcher: Blood Origin is the story of the elven society at its peak, before the cataclysmic event known as Conjunction of the Spheres that brought monsters, elves, and humans into the world.
“Viewers will be surprised because they’re going to see a story told about a period of elven history that was buried by the humans after their arrival and eventual conquest of the continent,” de Barra says. “We get to tell a tale about the elves when they were at their height, like all great societies before their fall.”
“This is the lead up to that story of colonization, and we explain that in a very nuanced way. I’ve always been fascinated with societies at their height right before they fall. And the stuff that’s lost in that fall,” de Barra reveals, “This is a world where elves are not the underclass, they’re the overclass. In many ways, this world is way more advanced than the world of The Witcher.”
“It’s not a perfect society despite it being elevated,” he adds, It’s a very classist society. If you’re born into a warrior class or you’re born into a lowborn class, or highborn class, that’s where you stay. It’s like a caste system.”
The creation of the very first witcher
De Barra also reveals more on the creation of the first witcher, teased earlier in the official synopsis. “The first official witcher didn’t happen until way after the arrival of the humans, with the creation of various witcher schools, etc. But the actual initial mechanics for that witcher, and the Trial of the Grasses, that was open [to explore]. It’s like, “How did that come about?” So, that’s what we delve into: What is the prototype of the witcher? What was the story there, and how did that get lost? And who found that critical element later?”
So who is the first prototype witcher? There might be some clues. Back when Blood Origin was still in the casting process, a rumor emerged via industry insider Daniel Richtman that Netflix was looking to cast Jason Momoa as the aforementioned proto-witcher.
That didn’t happen as Momoa was about to film his new Netflix film Slumberland in Summer 2021, right when Blood Origin was supposed to be filming. Among the leads, only Laurence O’Fuarain‘s axe-weilding berserk-type Fjall fits the physically imposing role that was most likely offered to Momoa. So Fjall is a likely candidate for our first witcher.
There, of course, can be a plot twist and the proto-witcher may turn out to be someone we didn’t expect.
Blood Origin to explore how and why The Conjunction of the Spheres happened
De Barra also explained how the idea for Blood Origin was born and how it will explore the Conjunction of the Spheres: “We’re going to explain how it happened and the reasons it happened.” de Barra said. “The [mystery of the] Conjunction Spheres led to this whole show because I was working on The Witcher Season 2, and we had a story point we couldn’t fix because we needed to know what happened. What was the world before the Conjunction?
“So I sketched it up on the white board.” he continues. “It was the most logical thing that made sense to me from a fantasy point of view and from Sapkowski’s books. [The results] basically became Blood Origin when I pitched it.”
And what about the monoliths? De Barra comments on those as well: “We learn the origin of the monoliths here. Who first made these monoliths? Why? And then we kind of understand how they became so important in the world of The Witcher later and the power that was bestowed upon them and how that came about. They’re the catalyst for a lot of what goes wrong in this world.”
Season 3 of The Witcher is in post-production for a Summer 2023 release. The live-action prequel The Witcher: Blood Origin has been set a Christmas 2022 release. Stay tuned to Redanian Intelligence and do pop into our Discord server to join in on The Witcher conversation.