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The Witcher: Blood Origin - What We Know So Far

One of the best things about a richly developed fantasy world is the potential for an innumerable number of sequels, prequels, and spin-offs. Game of Thrones will soon be getting a series set hundreds of years before the events of the original, and soon fans of The Witcher will be getting their own expanded universe, as well. Not only has Netflix already announced an animated spin-off film, but the streamer just broke the news that they are developing a new limited series set before the events of the Henry Cavill-starring show and titled The Witcher: Blood Origin.

According to a press release obtained by Looper, Andrzej Sapkowski, the author of the series of books on which the Netflix show and the popular video games of the same name are based, will be serving as a creative consultant on the new project. Declan de Barra, a writer on the original The Witcher series, will take on showrunner duties, while The Witcher showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich will serve as an executive producer.

We got a few other details from Netflix about the new series, so let's break down everything we know so far about the release date, cast, and plot of The Witcher: Blood Origin.

When to expect The Witcher: Blood Origin to premiere

Okay, we know what you're thinking, and we have the same question: When is Netflix planning on dropping The Witcher: Blood Origin? Unfortunately, there was no mention of a release window in the official announcement for the new series, but we do have a few clues that might help us pin down a general time frame for when to expect the prequel to come out.

Netflix's The Witcher series was announced in May 2017 (via Eurogamer), began filming in October 2018 (via Deadline), and was released in December 2019. If the prequel follows the same basic timeline, then we're expecting The Witcher: Blood Origin to premiere some time in late 2022 or early 2023. According to Netflix, the prequel series will only have six episodes as opposed to the eight in season 1 of The Witcher which could mean production goes a bit faster.

As for the issue of the ongoing disruption to film and TV productions, it seems possible at this juncture that The Witcher: Blood Origin will avoid those problems altogether. After all, season 2 of The Witcher is getting ready to resume filming, and if the new series has a year between its announcement and the start of filming like the original did, it may bypass any potential issues.

Who is going to star in The Witcher: Blood Origin?

The original The Witcher managed to get Superman himself, Henry Cavill, to don a long silver wig and play the hunky protagonist Geralt of Rivia. Geralt is a witcher, part of a legacy of monster hunters with magical abilities. One of the plot details (don't worry, we'll be getting into the rest in a moment) revealed to us in the press release is that The Witcher: Blood Origin will tell the story of the very first witcher. Whether or not that witcher is the protagonist of the series remains to be seen, but if it follows the lead of the original, then we're expecting a big-name actor could take on the role. Who exactly that would be remains to be seen, as no casting information has been provided thus far.

One thing we do feel certain of casting-wise is that it's unlikely that any cast members from the original series will be popping up in the prequel series. As you may have guessed, the fact that the series is going to focus on the original witcher means it takes place in the distant past compared to the timeline of the original. While the possibility of time travel or characters with extra-long life spans isn't totally out of the question, we're guessing The Witcher: Blood Origin is going to have a totally unique cast.

What we know about the plot of The Witcher: Blood Origin

In their announcement for The Witcher: Blood Origin, Netflix gave us a juicy tease of what to expect from the show's plot. They describe the series as being set 1,200 years before the timeline of The Witcher. In addition to the aforementioned original witcher, the series will explore, "the events that lead to the pivotal 'conjunction of the spheres,' when the worlds of monsters, men, and elves merged to become one."

The series' showrunner also gave us a few clues about what to expect from the series. Declan de Barra stated a desire to look at how the Elven world functioned before humans came on the scene. He also declared, "I've always been fascinated by the rise and fall of civilizations ... The Witcher: Blood Origin will tell the tale of the Elven civilization before its fall, and most importantly reveal the forgotten history of the very first Witcher."

This blast to the past is likely to excite hardcore The Witcher aficionados and new fans brought in by the Netflix series alike. Now that we know it's on the way, we'll have our elven ears open for more news about The Witcher: Blood Origin.