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Why Ciri From The Witcher Looks So Familiar

Freya Allan's role as Princess Ciri on Netflix's newest original series The Witcher — which was released on December 20, 2019 — is undoubtedly the breakout moment of her career. At only 18 years old, Allan's only just getting started, but she already had some extraordinarily good luck even before landing this major gig.

Born in Oxfordshire, England in 2001, Allan underwent a relatively fraught and confusing audition process for The Witcher, as she didn't really know she was auditioning to portray Ciri. Now that she's settled into the role, she's apparently beloved by the production staff. Director Marc Jobst took a moment to lavish her with praise in a quick question-and-answer session on twitter, describing her portrayal of Ciri as "luminous [...] fierce, charismatic, with the presence and strength of an old soul." There are no more encouraging words to describe a young woman taking on a role with as complicated of a backstory and destiny as Ciri's.

Allan's screen presence is indeed powerful, and many of you Witcher watchers at home have probably scratched your head and wondered where you've seen the actress before. While her career has only just taken off in the past year, Allan may look familiar to many. Let's take a look at what her time in the acting biz has offered her so far, and where you can find her again very soon.

Freya Allan's career had a (literally) short beginning

After attending the same prestigious academy as Harry Potter franchise icon Emma Watson — the Headington School in Oxford — Freya Allan began her artistic secondary education at the prestigious National Film and Television School in Buckinghamshire. As part of her studies, she participated in two short film productions: Bluebird and Christmas Tree. Since both of these were made as part of a curriculum, they never achieved major distribution.

From there, Allan went on to study at the Art University Bournemouth — though given her age and the fact she's landed several high-profile roles, she likely won't graduate any time soon — and starred in another short film production entitled Captain Fierce. In the short, Allan plays Linda, a girl who can only meet up with her friend Danny once a year because her family is part of a traveling carnival. They find an abandoned, damaged boat and decide to fix it so they can run off together. Unlike Bluebird and Christmas Tree, Captain Fierce is available to watch online. The short appears to have been uploaded as part of the hype building up around The Witcher's casting announcements, as many comments on the video speak positively about Allan's pending role as Ciri.

Freya Allan then upgraded to television

Before being taken under the wing of Henry Cavill's Geralt of Rivia on The Witcher, Freya Allan's first big production role was as a younger version of Minerva (you might remember her better by her nickname the Widow), a major character on AMC's martial arts action series Into the Badlands. The single episode on which Allan appeared includes a flashback to when Minerva was young and escaped from under the thumb of the barons that enslave people in the titular post-apocalyptic badlands. Following her short stint on Into the Badlands, she landed a small role on one episode of the BBC's 2019 miniseries adaptation of the beloved sci-fi novel War of the Worlds.

Going from those roles to standing front and center as part of The Witcher's major character triad (which also includes Anya Chalotra's Yennefer of Vengerberg) is one heck of a quantum leap, but that momentum is here to stay for at least the next couple of years. The Witcher was greenlit for a second season even before all eight episodes went live on Netflix, so that's a great sure thing for Allan's future. However, Allan's early career renaissance doesn't stop there.

Freya Allan's upcoming emergence on the silver screen

In 2020, Freya Allan will make her feature film debut in the action thriller Gunpowder Milkshake. Details on the plot of Gunpowder Milkshake are still slim, and there's no trailer just yet, but Allan will once again play a younger counterpart of the protagonist — in this case, Karen Gillan's lead character Eva. Gillan will co-star alongside Game of Thrones alum Lena Headey as a mother-daughter assassin duo out to end the head of a gang for whom they used to kill. Another woman-in-training for the warrior class should feel nice and familiar for Allan now, right? Here's hoping Allan will be a fresh new leader on the upward swing of this trend of female-led original action films.

Allan's other film project, which is still in pre-production, is a British program for Sky Media's new foray into original programming: a six-episode miniseries entitled The Third Day. This one also doesn't have much news behind it, but Allan is set to portray a character named Kail. The production company's website summarizes the story in terms very similar to the plot of 1973's The Wicker Man: "The Third Day is a story told over six episodes and in two distinct halves. The first – 'Summer', directed by Marc Munden (National Treasure, Utopia), sees Sam (played by Jude Law), a man drawn to a mysterious island off the British coast where he encounters a group of islanders set on preserving their traditions at any cost. The second – 'Winter', directed by Philippa Lowthorpe (The Crown, Three Girls), follows Helen (played by Naomie Harris), a strong-willed outsider who comes to the island seeking answers, but whose arrival precipitates a fractious battle to decide its fate." We presume Allan's character Kail will be one of the mysterious islanders.

Of all the actress' forthcoming offerings, The Witcher season 2 is the furthest out in time — and we're excited for what else Allan will bring to the fore in the future.