If you have a Netflix account, you’ve definitely watched, or at least heard of, The Witcher. Henry Cavill has taken on the role of Geralt of Rivia, a destroyer of all creatures evil and threatening, while Anya Chalotra plays Yennefer of Vengerberg, a sorceress with a past you may not expect. The series has taken the world by storm and has already been renewed for a second season – and some new casting has just been announced!
For those who don’t know, The Witcher is based on a series of books by Andrzej Sapkowski, a Polish author. The original book was published in Polish in 1993 but was translated into English in 2007, and then became the basis for a series of popular video games. I am currently playing The Witcher 3 with my husband and I’m loving it, and we are also reading the first book in the series, The Last Wish, and thoroughly enjoying that as well!
Something I immediately noticed was that the books and the videogames differ greatly from one another, almost like the books and the TV series of Game of Thrones. As Sapkowski said, “The game — with all due respect to it, but let's finally say it openly — is not an 'alternative version', nor a sequel. The game is a free adaptation containing elements of my work; an adaptation created by different authors.” The videogames approach the story differently, and are not cannon when it comes to the story of the novels. Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get into the new casting!
Coën Will Be Played by Yasen Atour
In the book, Coën is described as unusual in that he has scars from childhood – which either means he became a witcher later in his life or contracted illnesses as a very young child. He is also the one who trains Ciri in swordplay. You may have seen Yasen Atour in three major Hollywood films: Ben-Hur (2016), Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (2015), and Robin Hood (2018).
Vereena Will Be Played by Agnes Born
Since I don’t want to give any spoilers, all I’ll say is that Vereena is an interesting character and one who we don’t know all that much about at first. She is part of the Nivellin storyline, which is sort of a play on Beauty and the Beast. Agnes Born doesn’t have many credits on IMDB, but she was in a Swedish TV series called Monster.
Lambert Will Be Played by Paul Bullion
Another witcher at Kaer Morhen, the witcher training grounds, Lambert assists in training Ciri. He’s supposedly about the same age as Coën. You may have seen Paul Bullion in Peaky Blinders.
Nivellen Will Be Played by Kristofer Hivju
Despite the fact that the Sapkowski has teased Game of Thrones in the past and that showrunner Lauren Hissrich has made sure to distinguish The Witcher from Game of Thrones, one casting choice has made people raise their eyebrows. Nivellen, the counterpart to Vereena, will be played by Kristofer Hivju, who you might remember as Tormund Giantsbane in GoT.
Eskel Will Be Played by Thue Ersted Rasmussen
It seems that we will be spending quite a bit of time in Kaer Morhen in Season 2 of The Witcher, as Eskel is yet another witcher. Eskel’s features have been marked with a bad scar across the face, but he and Geralt are friends from childhood when they went through their trials together. Thue Ersted Rasmussen is an actor from Denmark and will also be in the newest Fast and Furious film.
Lydia Will Be Played by Aisha Fabienne Ross
Lydia is a sorceress and Vilgefortz’s assistant. (Vilgefortz is the character who returned Yennefer to Aretuza, for those who don’t remember.) Lydia is described as very pretty but bearing the scars of an experiment gone wrong on the lower half of her face that prevents her from communicating any way other than telepathy. You might recognize Aisha Fabienne Ross from The Danish Girl.
Francesca Will Be Played by Mecia Simson
Francesca Findabair is a sorceress and elf who is considered the most beautiful woman in the world. No wonder they cast a model in the role! She has some serious plot points, but I’m not going to spoil any of them for you. She won the fifth season of Britain’s Next Top Model in 2009.
And that’s what we know so far! The next season is set to release in 2021. The showrunner has said they'll be delving into Ciri's training at Kaer Morhen, as well as revisiting some of the short stories from the original book in the series, The Last Wish. Who’s ready for Season 2 of The Witcher?
Abby Roth is the creator of Classically Abby, an opera, beauty, fashion, and lifestyle brand dedicated to looking at the world from a classic perspective. Abby is an opera singer with three degrees in operatic performance from USC and Manhattan School of Music. She has performed all over at companies including Opera Omaha, Opera Maine, and Aspen Music Festival. You can find her website at www.classicallyabby.com and follow her on YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest at @ClassicallyAbby.