Netflix has given us a lot to look forward to in the world of The Witcher — not just Season 2 of the main series but two spinoffs, including a feature-length animated movie. The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf will be set hundreds of years before the show itself, bringing new fans into the deeper lore from the novels and the video games.
The Witcher Netflix original series became a huge success in 2019, but it built on the success of the novels and short stories by author Andrzej Sapkowski and the video game franchise by CD Projekt RED. Now, the show will delve into that source material even deeper for Nightmare of the Wolf, an anime-style film about Geralt's mentor, Vesemir. The character did not appear in The Witcher Season 1, so fans are excited to see him get such a grand treatment here. However, those who have only watched the show itself should have no problem diving in here either.
This new animated format seems perfect for The Witcher for many fans based on what they've seen so far. Veteran fans are also deeply fascinated by this spinoff for its promise of new, original material added to the canon. The other spinoff in the works promises the same — The Witcher: Blood Origins will be a limited series set during the Conjunction of the Spheres.
The wait for both spinoffs and Season 2 of the main series continues for now. Those looking to dive deeper into The Continent can find Sapkowski's novels on Amazon here in print, digital and audiobook formats. In the meantime, here's everything we know about The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf so far.
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.— Netflix Geeked (@NetflixGeeked) January 22, 2020
Netflix announced Nightmare of the Wolf in January of 2020, after the news leaked via the Writer's Guild of America. The movie has been in the works for over a year now and although the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed production on many projects, the animation industry has generally been able to keep up its usual pace, so there's a good chance the timeline hasn't been disrupted too much.prevnext
Nightmare of the Wolf is written by Beau DeMayo, who worked in the writer's room on The Witcher main series and on Marvel Studios' upcoming series Moon Knight. The main series' showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich is also involved in this spinoff as an executive producer. The animation itself will be handled by Studio Mir, an animation studio known for action-packed titles like the Avatar: The Last Airbender sequel The Legend of Korra. It has also worked on Netflix original series like Voltron: Legendary Defenders.prevnext
So far there is no cast in place for Nightmare of the Wolf, though two actors have been cast to play Vesemir in The Witcher main series. Theo James voiced a young version of Vesemir in a flashback sequence in Season 1, and since this movie takes place in the distant past, he may be a good choice to provide continuity. On the other hand, Kim Bodnia will play the current-age Vesemir in The Witcher Season 2, and casting him in the animated feature might seem more logical to Netflix.prevnext
Netflix has revealed the bare bones of the plot of this spinoff already, giving fans a vague idea of what it will reveal. The streamer's official description says: "Long before mentoring Geralt, Vesemir begins his own journey as a Witcher after the mysterious Deglan claims him through the Law of Surprise."
DeMayo also spoke a bit about the content and feel of the movie in an interview with ComicBook.com. He said: "[The Witcher world] is a massive canvas, and I actually started out my career working as an assistant and executive at Disney in animation, and it was there where I first got my job in the industry. So I was aware when Lauren came and asked me to write [the film] what we could do in animation that you cannot do in live-action."
"There is not necessarily always parity between those two mediums. There are things that you can animate in an animated form that will look so amazing, so badass, that if you did it in live-action, it's just going to look goofy or it's just going to register as a little false to the human eye," DeMayo continued. "There's a grace and an art form to animation, and especially anime, that allows a different flavor. So I think from Lauren and [my] perspective when we came at it, was what is the type of story we can tell? Which, I can't tell you the story, but what is the type of story that we could tell that we could never tell in our live-action scope? Something with magic and monsters and adventure and romance that you couldn't necessarily use a live-action medium to tell, and I think when people see the anime and when it releases, there are very particular choices we made."
"And the script itself, there are certain things it takes advantage of in terms of animation that only animation can do. I think that’s what's the most exciting thing that I'm waiting for fans to see. Is that, when you see the anime, it’s not just the events, it's what Studio Mir has been capable of pulling off. It's what our partners in the anime division at Netflix have been able to pull off. It is something... it is a story we could not have told in live-action in any way, shape or form. At least not without an incredible burden on production, I will say that," DeMayo concluded.prevnext
Here is the logo for Nightmare of the Wolf. A Witcher Anime film coming 2021. pic.twitter.com/vagw48L8NS— Netflix Geeked (@NetflixGeeked) December 21, 2020
Finally, there is no official release date for The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf just yet, but Netflix has said that it is coming sometime in 2021. Presumably, fans will get some warning before it premieres, not to mention a trailer and more announcements. However, time is running out since The Witcher Season 2 itself is slated for release in the last quarter of the year. Stay tuned for updates on Nightmare of the Wolf as they become available, and the rest of the growing Witcher universe.