Over the last few months two particular news stories have come out seemingly out of nowhere and shook The Witcher fandom quite a bit. We are of course talking about Henry Cavill’s departure after Season 3 with Liam Hemsworth taking over and former writer Beau DeMayo’s allegations that some of the writers “actively disliked” Andrzej Sapkowski’s books.
Now that the promo season for The Witcher: Blood Origin is ongoing, showrunner Lauren Hissrich is starting to address some of this in interviews and social media.
The Witcher showrunner is optimistic about the future
The bigger elephant in the room here is of course Henry Cavill leaving The Witcher after Season 3 and being replaced by Liam Hemsworth. Speaking to TechRadar, Lauren Hissrich said that this is a big deal for them too:
“That’s the thing – there’s a lot of talk and rumors about and we fully understand why fans are going there. What I will say is please come back for The Witcher season three so that we can continue to do this. Obviously, that [Cavill’s departure] is huge news.“
She continued that thought in an interview with IGN, speaking about the future with Liam Hemsworth: “What I’m excited about is that we are allowing this franchise to continue growing, and that we get new energy and chemistry that we haven’t discovered yet. And to me that’s part of the fun of television; you don’t know where exactly the adventure is going to end. So it’s something I’m really excited about.”
A similar quote was spoken to TheGamer regarding the post-Cavill chapter of The Witcher: “I’m so excited for viewers. I think that it’s just a new chapter for us. And I think new chapters bring new energy and that people will find things to love. So yeah, personally, I’m really excited.“
Speaking to Collider, Hissrich also gave a little update on the process of Season 4: “Honestly, I’m really excited for Witcher Season 4. I think it’s going to be fantastic. I can’t wait to get started. We’re not there. So right now, I just really want to keep the focus on Blood Origin and all of this amazing work.“
On a little side note, since we are talking about recasting, Lauren also addressed Sam Woolf replacing Chris Fulton as Rience in Season 3 of The Witcher. Just as we suspected, it was a scheduling conflict as Lauren confirmed in her social media comments:
“Chris Fulton was AMAZING and we were so sad (as was he) that the dates we needed him for didn’t align with the movie he was shooting. Sam Woolf had huge shoes to fill, but don’t worry, Rience is just as scary in S3!”
Concerning Beau DeMayo’s allegations about the writers room
The second item are Beau DeMayo‘s allegations about the writers room. DeMayo worked on The Witcher Season 1, Season 2 and Nightmare of the Wolf. In an Instagram Q&A documented by The Direct, he said the following:
“I’ve been on show – namely Witcher – where some of the writers were not [fans] or actively disliked the books and games (even actively mocking the source material). It’s a recipe for disaster and bad morale. Fandom as a litmus test checks egos, and makes all the long nights worth it. You have to respect the work before you’re allowed to add to its legacy.”
In her own Instagram, Lauren Hissrich adressed these allegations: “I have great respect for Beau and the episodes he wrote! The striga episode is one of my favorites. He wrote the one where people came to Kaer Morhen and Eskel died, which had a lot of backlash, but he was brave in telling the story he wanted to tell. I respect that.”
It would appear that, based on these words, killing Eskel off in this fashion was at least partly Beau DeMayo’s idea.
She continued: “I’ve never mocked the books. The books are my entire livelihood. I have a great relationship with Mr. Sapkowski, and writers rooms are sacred and safe supportive spaces. Don’t believe everything you read.”
After that, other writers of The Witcher echoed this sentiment on Twitter, praising the writers room and denied DeMayo’s allegations as false:
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.