On Wednesday, Netflix confirmed rumors that it was developing an animated spin-off of The Witcher, titled The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf. The new project is an animated feature from the main series' showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissirich and writer Beau DeMayo. It will be made in a style similar to Japanese anime.
Word of Netflix's animated Witcher spin-off first came out on Tuesday, when the writers at Redanian Intelligence noticed an entry for the script on the Writers' Guild of America website. As word spread, Netflix took to Twitter to confirm the news.
The script is credited to DeMayo, a writer known for working on The Witcher and the upcoming Marvel Studios series Moon Knight. The animation will be handled by Studio Mir, which is known for working on the Avatar: The Last Airbender sequel The Legend of Korra. The studio has also worked with Netflix before, notably on the platform's reboot Voltron: Legendary Defender.
This animation style gives a big hat tip to Japan's anime, which many fans online felt was a good fit for The Witcher after Wednesday's announcement. Fans seemed to like everything about the idea of this animated feature. In fact, their only concern was how long it would take to be released. The Witcher came out on Dec. 20 with eight episodes all at once, and fans are dying for more. Season 2 is set to begin filming any time now in London, but it is not slated for release until 2021.
Many fans are hoping that The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf will fill that gap between seasons. Producer Tomek Baginski recently gave an interview with Polish outlet Telewizja wPolsce, saying that there could be something on the way.
"We are planning a few more interesting surprises between seasons but I will not say exactly what will happen," he said.
The rumors are true, a new Witcher story is in the works! The anime film, The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf, will take us back to a new threat facing the Continent. Brought to you by the Witcher team @LHissrich and @BeauDeMayo, and Studio Mir the studio behind Legend of Korra.— NX (@NXOnNetflix) January 22, 2020
Spin-offs and story cul-de-sacs like this could be the perfect thing to set The Witcher apart in the growing field of high fantasy adaptations coming down the pike. Unlike many epic stories in the genre, The Witcher is very episodic, with the wider world serving only as a back drop to self-contained adventures. This means that fans could easily drop into any story in the series without missing a beat.
Already, this has made The Witcher an international juggernaut. The franchise began as a collection of short stories published in Polish by author Andrzej Sapkowski. He then transitioned into novels, which were adapted into comics, video games and one ill-advised movie, before finally finding their way to the screen in this latest form.
The Witcher Season 1 is streaming now on Netflix.