Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Witcher Showrunner Says Ciri's Obstacle Course Training Was A Nightmare To Film

"The Witcher" got off to a hot start when Season 1 premiered in 2019, bringing Andrzej Sapkowski's award-winning novels to life on Netflix in a grand fashion. Showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich won over fans of both the books and the video games by casting world-famous nerd Henry Cavill as the titular monster hunter, Geralt of Rivia. The result was one of Netflix's most-watched English-language shows of all time, reiterating that audiences love a big-budgeted fantasy show.

By the start of Season 2, "The Witcher" had united Geralt of Rivia (Cavill) and Cintra's crown princess Ciri (Freya Allan), who were tied by destiny even prior to her birth thanks to the ancient and equally confusing Law of Surprise. Alongside the pseudo-father-daughter tale runs a lot of action, as Geralt finds himself fighting all sorts of monsters, humans, and witches. Filming action always comes with its own challenges — and "The Witcher" has had its fair share of difficult scenes to shoot.

One scene left Cavill with a severely-torn hamstring that nearly ended his career. He told The Hollywood Reporter, "It was a very, very bad tear, and I was very lucky that it wasn't a complete detachment of the hamstring." Not all action scenes are made equally. While some may not be as dangerous as others, they are difficult to film for very different reasons. One such scene, for Season 2, involved Allan and fake snow.

Ciri's winter witcher training was shot in 'dead of summer'

The cast and crew of "The Witcher" sat down with Stream Wars to discuss their favorite moments from Season 2 — and in it, showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich revealed just how difficult Ciri's obstacle course training was to film.

"From a production standpoint, it was a nightmare," Hissrich admitted. "We are supposed to be shooting in an actual snowy environment, and instead, we were shooting on our very sunny, dead-of-summer backlot right outside London. So it's all the fake snow blowing around, and Freya [Allan] is dressed in winter clothes, and she's trying to be cold. I believe there are 132 shots, or 133 shots in that sequence, and 132 of them involve VFX for everything. For wires, for environment and snow, and obviously to make the obstacle course more dangerous."

The scene in question features Allan's character training to become a witcher at Kaer Morhen, as she attempts to complete an absurdly dangerous obstacle course to prove she has what it takes. Failure after failure results in her getting beat up by the wooden structures, leaving her bloodied, bruised, and exhausted. However, Ciri's determination and strength lead her to find a way past all of it — making it a pivotal moment for the character.

That's why, despite the difficulties involved in filming the scene, Hissrich chose it as her favorite moment of "The Witcher" Season 2, noting that Ciri and Allan both "grew in confidence and their abilities."