The Witcher Cinematic Universe: An Introduction

You’ve probably heard of the Marvel cinematic universe, which contains dozens of connected superhero films set in a shared world built on the Marvel comic books. 

The Witcher cinematic universe is the same idea for the Witcher: a shared world that encompasses all of the shows,  movies, and animated films inspired by the novels of Andrzej Sapkowski. These are entirely original Netflix projects that use the books as a source but build upon them with their own lore, narrative, and outcome. 

What started with Netflix’s The Witcher has since expanded into additional shows and animated films, with more new content on the horizon. Here’s a closer look at the Witcher cinematic universe and where it’s headed.

The Witcher

netflix the witcher

The earliest and best-known work of the Witcher cinematic universe is of course the Netflix show, which premiered on December 20th, 2019. Featuring Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia, the show adapts Andrzej Sapkowski’s novels for the big screen (albeit with significant alterations).

The first season was, for now, the most faithful adaptation. Inspired by the first two books, The Last Wish and Sword of Destiny, it’s a collection of short stories depicting the lives of the three main characters — Geralt, Yennefer, and Ciri — in different timelines until the moment their fate crosses.

Although it left many viewers confused by the timeline, The Witcher’s first season became one of the most-watched shows on the streaming service.

The second season of the Witcher introduced the events of the Blood of the Elves book and makes significant changes to certain characters. 

Meanwhile, the third season of Witcher premiered in the summer of 2023. The Witcher novel Time of Contempt is the inspirational material for the season. 

The fourth season is currently being worked on and is expected to be released in 2025. However, Henry Cavill is departing and Geralt will instead be portrayed by Liam Hemsworth (who was close to nabbing the role originally).

The Witcher: Blood Origin

witcher blood origin

A prequel to The Witcher, Blood Origin is set 1200 years before the story of Geralt. The story focuses on the Conjunction of the Spheres, the appearance of monsters on the Continent, and the creation of the first Witchers to deal with them.

This mini-series consists of four episodes and is intended to complement the Witcher show, shedding light on some aspects the novels have left open. The Witcher: Blood Origin was released on December 25th, 2022.

The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf

A dark fantasy adult animated movie produced by acclaimed studio Mir, The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf presents the story of Vesemir before he becomes the teacher of Geralt and the other Witchers in Kaer Morhen. The prequel is a Netflix original since neither the novels nor the games portray Vesemir in his early years.

The film premiered on August 23rd, 2021, in-between the first and second Witcher seasons. There are even speculations that Netflix may double down on Vesemir’s past and produce the next anime movie as a sequel to Nightmare of the Wolf, but that’s only hearsay.

Whatever the case, eagle-eyed fans found that the story told in Vesemir’s prequel does have some issues. For example, in the anime movie, Vesemir claims there are many ways to kill a Leshen, whereas in Witcher’s second season he only offers one option. Considering that both shows are in the shared Witcher cinematic universe, this inconsistency is a bit annoying.

The Future of the Witcher Cinematic Universe

The Witcher cinematic universe will continue with the Netflix show’s fourth season. Besides that, Netflix will also release the second animated Witcher film Sirens of the Deep in late 2024. And oddly enough, the company has also claimed that it will produce a family-friendly show based on the Witcher. 

While there are no other planned releases aside from that, we can certainly expect more tied TV shows, animated films, and possibly even movies in the coming years. We look forward to seeing what Netflix has in store for us.

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