Season three of Netflix’s smash hit series The Witcher will not hit our screens until sometime in 2023; however, the streaming platform is diving even deeper into the fantastical world with a limited prequel series. The Witcher: Blood Origin ’s announcement comes as the franchise dives deeper into witcher lore and the brotherhood. The upcoming spinoff is set more than a century before the flagship series, in the Elven world before the human intrusion. And, we found out through Netflix’s TUDUM event that it is coming our way on December 25!
Blood Origin is one of the several Witcher projects currently in development at Netflix. We’ve, of course, got more of the mothership series to come with season 3 set to film throughout 2022. We’ve also got another animated spin-off on the way as well as a new kid’s targeted series too.
So let’s get into what we do know about The Witcher: Blood Origin and we start with the post-credits teaser that was attached to The Witcher season 2.
The Witcher: Blood Origin trailer
Blood Origin’s initial trailer is full of sweeping shots of multiple vistas, lots of action, and does an intriguing job of introducing new characters who’ll take center stage in the series. That includes Michelle Yeoh’s Scian, Sophia Brown’s Éile, and Laurence O’Fuarain’s Fjall – Blood Origin’s leading trio who’ll have vital roles to play in the show’s plot and the Continent’s future.
The one-minute-long teaser’s song drops a major hint at what’s to come in the series, too. ‘Burn’, a 2013 single from UK singer-songwriter Ellie Goulding, feels rather apt for a show that’ll show the downfall of Elven civilization due to the Conjunction of the Spheres. But we’ll talk more about Blood Origin’s story later.
Netflix also released a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Blood Origin as part of its 2021 Tudum fan event:
The series will explain what led to the Conjunction of the Spheres. Set in an elven world 1,200 years before the events of The Witcher, Blood Origin will focus on a period of time that was never deeply explored in Andrzej Sapkowski’s novels and short stories that inspired the Netflix series or popular video games: the period leading up to the Conjunction of the Spheres.
The Witcher is set in a multiverse, and it is during the Conjunction of the Spheres that a number of these worlds collided, destroying some of the realms and merging others. Referenced only briefly in The Witcher‘s first season, the Conjunction of the Spheres is what brought monsters and magic into the realm. It was also what brought humans into it, with their own world having been destroyed during the cataclysmic event.
It will reveal the origin of the first witcher. Once humans learned to harness magic, they were able to create a mutagenic tincture, the Trial of the Grasses, that would transform those who took it (and survived) into powerful warriors designed to fight monsters, aka witchers. Blood Origin will introduce viewers to the very first of the witchers and share the story of how they came to be.
Witcher creator Andrzej Sapkowski is on board as a creative consultant and The Witcher showrunner, Lauren S. Hissrich, is acting as an executive producer on the series.
The Witcher: Blood Origin Cast
In November 2020, Recapped reported that the show is looking to cast two female leads. Their names were given as Eile ‘The Lark’ Lithe and Princess Merwyn. Eile hails from a clan of elves that use knives as their primary weapon. Originally Jodie Turner-Smith was attached as Eile but exited the series due to a scheduling conflict. Since then, we know that Sophia Brown (seen in Netflix’s Giri/Haji) will play Eile and Mirren Mack (known for Mudlarks) will play the Merwyn.
Laurence O’Fuarain (Rebellion, Vikings) was the second confirmed cast member, and he will portray the role of Fjall Stoneheart. This character was described as “physically strong, gritty, and visceral”, belonging to an elven clan that rivals Eile’s. It’s possible Fjall will eventually become the Continent’s first Witcher.
Jacob Collins-Levy (The White Princess, Young Wallander) was first announced to have joined the cast by Redanian Intelligence as Blood Origin’s “Captain Eredin”. This is the same Eredin we know from the novels and the games and, in fact, another actor was cast as an older version of this character for The Witcher season 2. This is the first major connection between Blood Origin and the main series.
Since those initial castings here’s who else has joined the cast:
- Michelle Yeoh will play Scian
- Dylan Moran will play Uthrok One-Nut
- Lenny Henry will play Balor
- Nathaniel Curtis will play Brian
- Francesca Mills will play Meldof
- Huw Novelli will play Brother Death / Callan
- Lizzie Annis will play Zacaré
- Zach Wyatt will play Syndril
The Witcher: Blood Origin Release Date
During TUDUM this weekend they dropped the first poster plus the release date – December 25th. It’s sooner than a lot of us expected. I’m looking forward to new trailers and images that reveal more about the story as we get closer to the series’ debut.
The Witcher: Blood Origin story explained
Most of you will know that Netflix’s The Witcher is based on a beloved series of books written by Andrzej Sapkowski, that also inspired CD Projekt Red’s popular Witcher video games. While Sapkowski sometimes touches on events like the Conjunction of the Spheres, it is clear that Blood Origin‘s story will be much more reliant on the imagination of the writers because very little is known about this period in the Continent’s history.
That being said, there is a foundation of early history that the show could lean on. The world of The Witcher was originally populated in waves. First by the gnomes, then came dwarves and finally elves. While these Elder Races weren’t exactly co-existing in peace, the Conjunction of the Spheres threw their world into chaos, trapping all sorts of unnatural creatures from other dimensions including humans and monsters. It is neither known what caused the Conjunction nor how it transpired, just that it changed the fabric of the Continent forever.
The creation of the first Witcher is an event that is almost as shrouded in myth as the Conjunction. Long after monsters first appeared on the Continent, a group of renegade mages came together to forge a weapon against the supernatural creatures that had become a blight on the people in many regions. Ironically, some of them like the sorcerer Alzur were themselves responsible for creating the most horrid abominations imaginable through magic. The first witchers were created in a secret and incredibly painful ritual that came to be known as the Trial of the Grasses. Those who survived, gained enhanced reflexes, speed and agility, making them the ultimate monster-slayers.
The show will find its own way to get to these events, but this is not to say that it can’t borrow from the books. Exploring a pre-Conjunction world could offer a unique opportunity to delve deep into the different societies of the Elder Races, in a way the main Witcher show can’t. The mystery of the first witcher and the mages who created him looms large throughout all the centuries that follow right into Geralt’s lifetime.