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“As long as we can keep telling great stories which honor his work”: Henry Cavill’s One Major Condition Made Him Quit ‘The Witcher’ Despite Him Being Invested For 7 Seasons

Henry Cavill The Witcher

Henry Cavill is one of those people who can completely geek out over fantasy novels or build his own Superman gaming PC, list the greatest sci-fi epics off the top of his head in a single breath, and do all of that while looking like, well, Henry Cavill. The greatest reason behind the British actor bringing substance to his role is not simply his towering figure but the abundance of factual research and knowledge that he harbors in his encyclopedic brain; and the wish to respect the authorial intention instead of dismissing them for profit.

The Witcher
The Witcher (2019-present)

Also read: “I can tell you nothing”: Henry Cavill Avoids Question About The Witcher

Henry Cavill’s Aversion to The Witcher‘s New Direction

While the story behind Henry Cavill‘s casting as Geralt is a story worth retelling over podcasts and interviews years down the line, it loses the essence of honest excitement on Cavill’s part once those operating behind-the-scenes change the rules of the game. Being a devout practitioner of staying true to the source material, Cavill’s sentimentalities were put to the test when a handful of writers and producers decided they did not like Andrzej Sapkowski’s narrative anymore.

Thus began a path charting their own version of The Witcher built upon the skeletal structure of the author’s creation. The live-action adaptations of novels and gaming series are known to be different from the source material due to the producers’ wish to add creativity to the already-known stories and make them more cinematically favorable for the audience. The beauty of The Witcher is its vast and sprawling world which to this day remains unknown to many in its literary origins.

Henry Cavill and Freya Allan as Geralt and Cirilla
Henry Cavill and Freya Allan as Geralt and Cirilla

Also read: “If they actually wanted to make a good project, he would’ve stuck”: Henry Cavill Leaving The Witcher Splits the Internet, Fans Claim He Was Done With Incompetent Writers 

Netflix’s success should have encouraged the producers to stick to a world-building dedicated to the laboriously created and expansive arc of Geralt of Rivia. Instead, like Icarus, the ambitious flight of the writers to create a version they like better than Sapkowski’s original, resulted in a downfall in quality as proven in the reception to the series’s Season 2.

Henry Cavill Hints His Stay at The Witcher Was Conditional

The beauty of the storytelling of The Witcher and having Henry Cavill as its majestic lead is the ease with which the writers could have taken the latter’s inputs into account before moving ahead with a specific plotline. The Netflix series had been ambitious from the very beginning, with showrunner Lauren Hissrich stating the 7-season plan that was laid out even before the first season had premiered on the streaming platform.

Geralt of Rivia
Henry Cavill as the Butcher of Blaviken

Also read: Henry Cavill Officially Leaves The Witcher With Liam Hemsworth as Replacement, Fans Convinced He’s Now Fully Focused on Superman

But Henry Cavill was subjected to the wigs and brushes of the makeup department rather than the bullpen of the writers’ room. The actor said, “As long as we can keep telling great stories which honor Sapkowski’s work,” he would be inclined to follow through with the 7-season plan. Not only did the writers and producers not follow through, but utterly disrespected Sapkowski’s work by stating they simply did not like his work, to begin with. Later, Cavill spoke on The Witcher‘s YouTube channel and revealed,

I’m a huge fan of the books and staying loyal to them, and it’s about making sure that story happens without too much in the way of diversions or side things going on to muddy the waters.”

Henry Cavill lays down his Witcher medallion
Henry Cavill lays down his Witcher medallion

Also read: “The role’s not for you”: Henry Cavill Reveals He Was Never the First Choice to Play Geralt of Rivia in The Witcher

Beau DeMayo, known for his association with Marvel projects, who was previously a writer on the show, later revealed that some writers “actively disliked” Sapkowski’s novels and stated that “you have to respect the work before you’re allowed to add to its legacy.” Apparently, the same thought at its core resonated with Cavill loud enough for him to remember his conditional stay and became one of the reasons behind his abrupt yet honorable departure from the sets of Netflix’s The Witcher.

The Witcher Seasons 1-2 are available for streaming on Netflix.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

Written by Diya Majumdar

It's 2023 and Diya Majumdar's social life is defined by a 365-day binge-marathon of films and television shows. Having graduated with honors in literature from Miranda House, she now has more than 1000 published articles on Fandomwire, and her passion and profession both include dissecting the world of cinema. She happens to be a liberally opinionated person with an overbearing love for Monet, Edvard Munch, and Van Gogh, and hardly anything fascinates her more than painting exact replicas of all their troubled works – in oil, of course.