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The Witcher Fans Make Their Voices Heard With Petition To Keep Henry Cavill On As Geralt

Is the Internet still on fire? Yes, yes, it is. "The Witcher" fans are still reeling from the recent news that Henry Cavill will no longer be donning his iconic white wig after Season 3. Cavill has officially laid down his sword as Geralt of Rivia and instead will be picking up his Man of Steel red cape once more.

On October 24, 2022, Cavill posted a video to his Instagram, announcing that he would soon be returning to his role as Clark Kent. In the caption, the actor wrote, "A very small taste of what's to come, my friends. The dawn of hope renewed. Thank you for your patience, it will be rewarded."

Indeed, some have speculated that the actor's departure from the Netflix series was due to incompatible work schedules. Without a doubt, fighting crime and the forces of evil as Superman is an intensive and time-consuming position to be in. Not to mention that, in all likelihood, being part of the DC Extended Universe pays better than acting  on "The Witcher." However, many fans aren't too happy that Cavill won't be returning to his role as Geralt.

Fans have not given up on having Cavill back as Geralt

Out of all this discontentment, a Change.org petition emerged, similar to what happened after "Game of Thrones" Season 8 aired. The petition titled "NETFLIX: You MUST keep Henry Cavill as The Witcher and replace the writers instead" has blown up and, at the time of this writing, it has nearly reached its goal of 50.000 signatures.

Stef Ma, the creator of the petition, wrote, "Let us show them in pure numbers (and thus lost money, because that's all they really care about) that none of us Witcher fans will stand with them and will abandon the show (and potentially our subscriptions) after The Witcher season 3 is concluded. Netflix can only exist because all of us pay them monthly to produce content that is entertaining for us, unfortunately all public information points towards a production team making decisions that are completely opposite to the fans' – our – interests."

If the "Game of Thrones" petition was any indication, there are times when no matter the overall agreement among the fanbase, the series' executives will not backtrack on their decisions. But, whether this time they'll listen to the audience's wishes remains to be seen. At the end of the day, it will also come down to whether Henry Cavill would be able and willing to pick his swords and medallion back up and see Geralt's journey through till the end.

Liam Hemsworth did not receive a warm welcome

As shown above, fans are not happy with having to say goodbye to Henry Cavill as Geralt. This unhappiness has nothing to do with the actor who was chosen to substitute him, that being Liam Hemsworth, who thankfully, is also a fan of "The Witcher". Regardless of whom was chosen to put on the massive shoes that Cavill left behind, fans have come to thoroughly associate Netflix's "The Witcher" with the actor to the point where they cannot find it within themselves to divorce the two.

Unfortunately, this puts Hemsworth, who cannot be blamed for the recasting, in an unfavorable position. On the Instagram post, the Australian actor acknowledged that Cavill handed him the reins of the series' beloved protagonist, and while some commenters showed their support, many others expressed their displeasure. One of the top comments with over 5,000 upvotes reads, "no. stop. you can't replace henry"

"The Witcher" fans have been quite vocal about their opposition to the major change all over the internet. On Reddit, there are multiple threads that make the overall fan consensus known. u/cerebralvenom wrote, "Well, there goes the single redeeming factor of the show." This got several replies, including one from u/WhiskeySorcerer, who wrote, "I actually really like Joey Batey as Dandelion. The bard song is cool, and his character is slowly developing rather nicely. But yeah, other than that, you're totally right." 

Indeed, one should not discredit the other actors who have also fully dedicated themselves to the series like Batey, Anya Chalotra, and Freya Allan. However, together they do not seem to be enough to ameliorate fans' doubts regarding the future of the series.

Cavill values loyalty to the source material

During his three seasons on "The Witcher," Henry Cavill seemed born to play Geralt of Rivia. This was, in great part, thanks to the incredible passion Cavill nurtured for the fantasy franchise, first as a fan of the video games and later as a fan of Andrzej Sapkowski's novels.

In an interview with Graham Norton, Cavill was asked whether he knew more than anyone else on set. Ever humble, Cavill denied knowing more than anyone else and just called himself a "big fan." Norton then asked whether he corrected others on set, to which Cavill replied, "I don't necessarily. I am effusive about being loyal to the source material, let's put it that way."

Those are the operative words: "loyal to the source material." It has somewhat become common knowledge even among those who haven't read the books that the Netflix show, especially after the 1st season, strayed from Sapkowski's original story. Although Cavill has never outright said it, his comments to Norton suggest that he might not have been content with the direction the series had taken and that could've contributed greatly for him to allow himself to be recast in a role he was so fond of.