in , , ,
- Advertisment -

‘Cavill wasn’t immediately cast’: The Witcher Considered Hiring Marvel Star Mads Mikkelsen or Game of Thrones Actor Nikolaj Coster-Waldau Before Settling for Henry Cavill

'Cavill wasn't immediately cast': The Witcher Considered Hiring Marvel Star Mads Mikkelsen or Game of Thrones Actor Nikolaj Coster-Waldau Before Settling for Henry Cavill

It isn’t every day that one comes across the perfect casting choice for a show or film’s lead, and it is even rarer to have the actor desperately fight for and land on the lap of the casting directors. For The Witcher, the situation resembled the latter scenario when Henry Cavill’s insistence on getting the part of Geralt of Rivia ultimately won over showrunner, Lauren S. Hissrich.

However, casting calls usually last months and include dozens, if not hundreds of auditions and callbacks, before a show as big as the Netflix epic fantasy series can settle on a lead. Considering how Hissrich too was intent on finding the perfect Witcher for her show, the one guy who kept nudging her for an audition since Day 1 was not bound to be her first and last option. But if not Cavill, then who?

Geralt of Rivia
Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia

Also read: Netflix ‘Optimistic’ Liam Hemsworth Replacing Henry Cavill Won’t Affect The Witcher Legacy: ‘There’s been a legacy of iconic characters who had their actors changed’

Lauren Hissrich’s Wild Hunt for The Witcher‘s Geralt of Rivia

Showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich has been very strict about her casting choice for the show’s main array of characters: Geralt, Ciri, Yennefer, Jaskier, and Cahir. The search for Yennefer, although quick, was equally daunting as the rest, and that of the Princess had allegedly taken over 200 auditions of young girls before finally finding a perfect Ciri in Freya Allan. However, it was Henry Cavill – who already has a record of fighting for his dream roles and falling short in producers’ eyes – that stood out to Hissrich after the actor’s agents kept calling her for a shot.

Mads Mikkelsen
Mads Mikkelsen

Also read: “I’ll fight tooth and nail for this character”: Henry Cavill Reveals His Extreme Fondness for The Witcher That Nearly Crushed Him When He Was First Rejected for the Role

But before the showrunner could become completely obsessed with the idea of the Superman actor as her series lead, there were other options being considered for the role of Geralt. The Danish actor and coveted casting choice for big-budget franchise films like MCU’s Doctor Strange, WB’s Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, Casino Royale, and lead in the Academy Award-winning Another Round, aka Mads Mikkelsen was a top contender for the role of the Witcher. His sultry voice and rough-around-the-edges appearance would have made him a good fit, too.

Lauren Hissrich reportedly also had her eye on the Game of Thrones star, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, who – although undoubtedly looks good in long blonde hair and can brandish a sword unlike anyone else – doesn’t have the Witcher voice that resounds in the ears as Cavill’s does.

Henry Cavill’s Fight for the Role of the Witcher

As the reports go, with some being supplied straight from the horse’s mouth, Henry Cavill was so invested in securing the role of Geralt that he would call his agents up about an update every day. His eventual persistence paid off when an audition later, Hissrich was spellbound by the Brit’s delivery and execution and could not shake off the realization of how perfect he was for the role. As the scripts for each episode of the series piled up, it was Cavill’s voice that merged and juxtaposed with that of the Witcher, ultimately contributing to the perfect casting lineup in the history of video game to live-action adaptations.

Henry Cavill lays down his medallion for the Witcher
Henry Cavill lays down his medallion

Also read: Henry Cavill Fans Implore Netflix End The Witcher After Season 3: “It’d be better to just stop the series”

3 years later, the dream went out the window with the apparent fallout between the lead and the show’s writers and producers. Although not an established fact, rumors indicate the poor writing of The Witcher Season 2 pushed Henry Cavill away from his devotion to the series. His eventual exit, which came with controversial allegations of misogyny, bad behavior, and toxicity on set (all unverified), was met with mass protest and outcries, with many imploring Hissrich to cancel the show post-Season 3 rather than carry on with the storyline.

In the aftermath of Cavill’s exit, The Witcher now employs Liam Hemsworth as the show’s leading man, with The Hunger Games actor assigned to picking up his sword and medallion from Season 4.

The Witcher is available for streaming on Netflix.

Source: OSSA

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.