The Witcher showrunner Lauren Hissrich says she “completely understands” why fans are outraged by Henry Cavill’s imminent departure.
In an exclusive conversation with TechRadar on The Witcher: Blood Origin’s UK junket, Hissrich said she sympathized with viewers about Cavill leaving the hit Netflix show. However, Hissrich simultaneously appealed to fans to stick with the TV series, even though Cavill won’t be a part of the cast for much longer.
Hissrich’s response comes five weeks after it was announced that the show’s protagonist will not be returning as Geralt of Rivia after Season 3 of The Witcher. brother of Marvel movie star Chris Hemsworth – replaces Cavill from season 4.
In the days that followed, The Witcher’s fan base expressed their shock and dismay that Cavill walked away from one of his dream roles. A petition from Change.org (opens in new tab) — currently with more than 275,000 signatures — was even set up, calling for Netflix to try and persuade Cavill to stay and instead fire the show’s writing team.
For her part, Hissrich says she fully understands the fans’ anger at her and the rest of the show’s creators. However, she also called on The Witcher’s fan base to continue to support the cast and crew, adding that failing to do so would be at the expense of the upcoming Blood Origin spin-off and future seasons of The Witcher’s main series.
“It’s also a big deal for us,” Hissrich admitted when TechRadar mentioned how fans had reacted negatively to Cavill’s impending departure. “And that’s the point – there’s a lot of talk and rumor about it and we totally understand why fans go there.
“What I’m saying is please come back for season three of The Witcher so we can keep doing this. That’s clear [Cavill’s departure] is big news. But what I don’t want to do is – this has to stay about Blood Origin, Declan [de Barra, Blood Origin’s showrunner], the cast and the crew. This is their time in the spotlight.”
Cavill is a self-proclaimed Witcher superfan and his portrayal of Geralt was a major highlight of one of the best Netflix shows during its first two seasons. Without him, fans fear the mainline series will deviate further from author Andrzej Sapkowski’s source material, with large segments of the fan base previously criticizing the plot-based deviations of the show’s creative team in The Witcher Season 2.
As a huge Witcher fan, Cavill was as vocal as his fan base about wanting the show to be more in line with Sapkowski’s fantasy novels. In December 2021, he told Netflix’s The Witcher season 2 unlocked aftershow (opens in new tab)“I’m a huge fan of the books and stay true to them, and it’s about making sure the story happens without too many distractions or side issues that muddy the waters.”
Since news of Cavill’s departure broke, multiple rumors have been circulating, with many fans suggesting that he had fallen out with the show’s writers and producers over the direction of the show’s story. Ever Mr. Cavill expressed no animosity towards the series’ creative team in his own Instagram post (opens in new tab) about leaving the Witcher TV show. Instead, he chose to ask Liam Hemsworth to carry on Geralt’s legacy in the live-action adaptation.
Obviously there are only a few individuals who know the truth behind Cavill leaving the show and it’s very unlikely we’ll ever find out. However, Hissrich’s comments will do little to quell fan speculation about why he’s taken the time to play Geralt – or convince them to continue watching the show’s main series and/or become spin-offs. .
TechRadar will bring you more Blood Origin coverage leading up to its December 25 release. So check back with us over the next two weeks for more exclusives and our full take on The Witcher’s second spin-off project.
For more Netflix and The Witcher content, check out the best Netflix movies and the best Netflix documentaries. You can also find out how to read the Witcher books in order or check out one of these five bloody fantasies as we wait for Season 3 to arrive.