Netflix has confirmed that its forthcoming animated movie, The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf, will not focus on the witcher central to its live-action series, Geralt of Rivia.
Instead, the star of the show will be Vesemir, a character well-known to readers of the Witcher novels and players of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, but rather less so to those who watched the Henry Cavill-starring Netflix show.
Vesemir does get a mention or two in the final episode of the show’s first season, ‘Much More’. I don’t think this is too spoilery, but go off at me if it is: an injured Geralt dreams of his childhood, of his path to becoming a witcher, and mouths the name Vesemir, saying he needs to get back to him.
But in a massively dramatic episode, with a whole lot of special effects exploding elsewhere, that’s all we’re given when it comes to Vesemir. Viewers are left pretty much in the dark as to his importance to Geralt, and to witchers in general.
Now, if you’ve played CD Projekt Red’s games and/or read the books by Andrzej Sapkowski, you don’t need me to tell you that Vesemir is, actually, kind of a big deal. The oldest of the witchers to call Kaer Morhen home, the ostensible leader of the School of the Wolf, Vesemir is a key character in Wild Hunt and, assuming Geralt is her father figure, something of a grandfather to Ciri. (That’s the pair pictured together, up top.)
“Long before mentoring Geralt, Vesemir begins his own journey as a Witcher after the mysterious Deglan claims him through the law of surprise.”
Who’s Deglan, you ask? That, I cannot tell you. Sounds like an original character to me, which suggests that Nightmare of the Wolf, unlike the Cavill-fronted show, won’t be leaning too heavily on the books for influence. That, or Netflix is again taking liberties with names. Perhaps Deglan is simply Barmin, a witcher who taught Vesemir everything he knows, but under a different name. After all, they switched Dandelion to Jaskier for the live-action show, so why wouldn’t they do something similar, again?
Witcher-centric blog Redanian Intelligence suggests that Vesemir could be voiced by Theo James, who oh-so-briefly utters a word or two as the character in the aforementioned eighth episode. In the video games, he’s voiced by William Roberts, who could also be in line for the role. But James’ past credits with Netflix, namely Castlevania and The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, would appear to place him in pole position for the gig.
Nightmare of the Wolf is set to air on Netflix later in 2020, while the “more intense” second season of The Witcher is in production now for release in 2021. Netflix considers it to be a “massive new franchise”, so don’t bet against it having several seasons more in the pipeline. If you’re yet to watch the first season, check our our need-to-know guide before you do so. It’ll help, trust me.