The Witcher stands as one of Netflix's biggest gambles to pay off in spades. Unlike Stranger Things, which it stumbled into, or The Crown, which it poured money into and then never released numbers for, The Witcher was one the streamer boasted about how big it would be and then got the viewership to back it up. It's not surprising, then, that Netflix is all too eager to produce more of it, with an announcement The Witcher's prequel series Blood Origin is coming soon.
This is the third Witcher-based series, after the original live-action series starring Henry Cavill and the animated film The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf. Nightmare of the Wolf was confirmed back in January 2020, though a release date is not yet available. The Witcher Season 2 is currently waiting to resume production after the filming shutdowns in Europe this spring.
Blood Origin will follow in the footsteps of the original series, planned as a live-action show. Netflix is currently billing it as a "limited series," six episodes in all. Unlike both The Witcher and Nightmare of the Wolf, Blood Origin will be set in the Continent's far past, exploring how Witchers came to be in the first place.
Here's the show's logline:
Set in an Elven world 1,200 years before the world of The Witcher, Blood Origin will tell a story lost to time — the origin of the very first Witcher, and the events that lead to the pivotal “conjunction of the spheres,” when the worlds of monsters, men, and elves merged to become one.
Fans will be pleased to know Blood Origin's team will be helmed by those who know The Witcher well. Author Andrzej Sapkowski, who wrote the original Witcher novels, will act as a creative consultant on the new series. "It is exciting that the world of Witcher — as planned in the very beginning — is expanding," Sapkowski said in a press release announcing the new show. "I hope it will bring more fans to the world of my books."
Further, Lauren Schmidt Hissrich, the showrunner on The Witcher, will act as an executive producer overseeing production. Showrunner duties will fall to writer Declan de Barra, who was part of the writing team for The Witcher Season 1. According to Variety, De Barra said he always wondered what the Elven world was like "before the cataclysmic arrival of the humans":
I've always been fascinated by the rise and fall of civilizations, how science, discovery, and culture flourish right before that fall. How vast swathes of knowledge are lost forever in such a short time, often compounded by colonization and a rewriting of history. Leaving only fragments of a civilization’s true story behind. 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.”
The Witcher: Blood Origins does not yet have a release date. The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf and The Witcher Season 2 are currently in production. It's possible Nightmare of the Wolf could be on Netflix as early as December of 2020; The Witcher Season 2 is expected in late 2021.