The Witcher was an instant hit when Season 1 premiered on Netflix in Dec. 2019. But now, fans of the fantasy drama seem to be in for a long wait until we can return to The Continent and see what's in store for Season 2.
The Witcher is inspired by Andrzej Sapkowski's Witcher book series, which also spawned the popular video game franchise. The show stars Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia, a witcher whose destiny becomes bound to the sorceress Yennefer (Anya Chalotra) and the powerful princess Ciri (Freya Allan). The first season was told across three timelines, each of which followed one of the three main characters. But now that all three timelines have caught up to each other, we can't wait for Season 2 so that the series can really delve into the relationships between Geralt, Yennefer, and Ciri.
So what can we expect of The Witcher Season 2? Here's everything we know so far.
It is expected to premiere in 2021: When Netflix renewed The Witcher for a second season in November 2019, it was announced that the series was set to begin production in early 2020 with an anticipated air date in 2021. Production on Season 2 officially kicked off in the U.K. in February 2020.
Production on Season 2 was suspended due to coronavirus. On March 16, production on The Witcher, which was filming outside London, was suspended. Kirstofer Hivju, who will star in Season 2, announced on Instagram that he had tested positive for COVID-19 and planned to self-isolate for as long as it tooik. Deadline reported Netflix then advised those involved with the project to quarantine themselves and had plans for "a deep cleaning and disinfection" of the set. The Witcher was the first major TV production in the U.K. to be halted as a result of coronavirus.
The main cast will return: Henry Cavill, Anya Chalotra, and Freya Allen will all reprise their roles as Geralt, Yennefer, and Ciri, respectively.
Other returning cast members include Joey Batey (Jaskier), MyAnna Buring (Tissaia), Tom Canton (Filavandrel), Lilly Cooper (Murta), Jeremy Crawford (Yarpin Zigrin), Eamon Farren (Cahir), Mahesh Jadu (Vilgefortz), Terence Maynard (Artorius), Lars Mikkelsen (Stregobor), Mimi Ndiweni (Fringilla Vigo), Royce Pierreson (Istredd), Wilson Radjou-Pujalte (Dara), Anna Shaffer (Triss Merigold), and Therica Wilson Read (Sabrina).
The series is introducing a lot of new characters. In February 2020, Netflix announced new additions to The Witcher cast, including that Game of Thrones' Kristofer Hivju in the role of Nivellen. Agnes Bjorn will play Vereena, who is a key role in the Nivellen storyline. Aisha Fabienne Ross will play Lydia, a sorceress and assistant to Vilgefortz. Mecia Simson has been cast as Francesa, and though Netflix didn't include a last name for the character book readers can probably safely assume the actress will be playing Francesca Findabair, also known as Enid an Gleanna, a powerful elven ruler.
Also joining the cast are Yasen Atour, Paul Bullion, and Thue Ersted Rasmussen as witchers Coen, Lambert, and Eskel, respectively. Additionally, Kim Bodnia (Killing Eve) will play Vesemir, the oldest and most experienced witcher, who is also the closest thing Geralt has to a father figure.
Season 2 will likely draw inspiration from Blood of Elves: While the first season was largely an adaptation of the two short story collections The Last Wish and Sword of Destiny, Season 2 will probably draw most of its inspiration from the first novel in The Witcher Saga, Blood of Elves. Unlike the short stories, which jumped around in time and location a lot, the five-novel series tells one cohesive storyline about Geralt, Yennefer, and Ciri as they fight to protect Ciri from those who wish to harm or control her.
We'll probably be venturing to Kaer Morhen. Blood of Elves kicks off with Geralt and Ciri at Kaer Morhen, an old keep that witchers are trained at. And based on the casting news of witchers Coen, Lambert, and Eskel, this seemingly confirms that Season 2 will be following our heroes to the castle, where Ciri will likely begin training to be a witcher herself.
Season 2 won't just be based on the novels though. New characters Nivellen and Vereena both originated in the short story "A Grain of Truth" from the first book, The Last Wish. "A Grain of Truth," which is about a cursed man in a complicated romantic relationship (it's also the books' take on Beauty and the Beast), is one of the few short stories from The Last Wish that wasn't include in The Witcher Season 1.
As of now, no casting announcements have indicated that Season 2 will draw upon any of the short stories from Sword of Destiny that haven't already been featured — including "A Shard of Ice," "Eternal Flame," or "A Little Sacrifice" — but that doesn't mean these storylines won't be featured in the series next season or down the line.
Season 2 will introduce another original character: The Witcher Season 1 featured a handful of characters who didn't originate in the books, and Season 2 will follow suit. In February 2020, it was announced that Carmel Laniado has joined the cast in a recurring role as Violet, "a young girl whose playful and whimsical demeanour is a front for a smarter and more sadistic character," per Deadline. While Violet wasn't featured in the books, fans of the popular video game franchise likely can't help thinking of the violet rose prominently featured in the Hearts of Stone expansion. Showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich has been very clear that the series isn't adapting the games, but there's always the chance this new character Violet may prove to be a subtle nod to them and the tragic violet rose storyline.
It will consist of eight episodes. Keeping form with its freshmen run, Season 2 of The Witcher will once again be made up of eight episodes. Stephen Surjik will direct Episodes 1 and 2, Sarah o"Gorman will direct Episodes 3 and 4, Ed Bazalgette will direct Episodes 5 and 8, and Geeta Patel will direct Episodes 6 and 7.
The timeline won't be as confusing: Many viewers struggled to keep track of the show's three separate timelines in Season 1 (which you can find explained here), but these fans will be relieved to know this won't be as big of an issue in Season 2. During a Reddit AMA in January 2020, showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich confirmed that the structure "will definitely change in season two, as they're [sic] stories have begun to converge."
Season 2 isn't the only Witcher content heading our way. In January 2020, Netflix announced that they were making an anime feature film set in The Witcher universe, titled The Witcher: Nightmare of the World. The film will explore a new threat facing the Continent, likely prior to the events of the series.