What you need to know about ‘The Witcher’ series, according to star Henry Cavill and showrunner Lauren Hissrich

MANILA, Philippines – From the Man of Steel to the White Wolf, Henry Cavill is taking on yet another big, iconic role in one of the most anticipated television events in recent times.

If any of the first looks coming out are any indication, Netflix’s The Witcher ought to fill the vacuum – or the yearning for good high fantasy on TV – left in the wake of the monumental Game of Thrones.

Like the aforementioned show, The Witcher has everything from from turbulent geopolitics in a medieval-like realm to awe-inspiring mythical elements. But with its own rich lore – and a compelling hero – this new show seems to be gearing up to be the next big thing.

Cavill plays the silver-haired monster slayer and occasional mercenary sword Geralt of Rivia – the eponymous “witcher.”

With premiere day just around the corner, the actor, along with showrunner and executive producer Lauren Schmidt Hissrich (Daredevil, The Defenders, The Umbrella Academy), recently toured different countries including the Philippines to promote the upcoming series.

In their short visit to Manila, the pair met members of press and some fans, to whom they spoke about how this show came to be and what to expect from it.

“You build up the right muscle groups which you can’t protect like knee joints or whatever it may be: hips, elbows, shoulders. That was what me and my trainer focused on the most. Aside from the aesthetic, we had to make sure that my body could keep up with the schedule and the fights.”

Cavill also happened to perform his own stunts – no doubles whatsoever, at least for this one. “It’s very important that the character exists within the action, and for audience immersion it’s important that they know that I’m there doing the same thing,” he argued in a separate interview.

“I always liken it to [having] a crying scene and for whatever reason I’m having a bad day and I can’t cry, I don’t get another actor in to come cry for me. So, for the action, if I’m gonna take on a physical role which has a lot of athleticism to it – or whatever it may be – I’m going to bring myself up on that level so I can perform that role to the fullest.”

Hissrich echoed this point: “I don’t just want to see people banging swords against one another. You could do that on any show.”

“To me, every fight is about what is the story that fight is trying to tell. How is that fight furthering the relationship between two characters? Do they want to fight? Do they not want to fight? How is that part of the story?

Photo by Katalin Vermes/courtesy of Netflix

As the show is set to hit the streaming service soon, Cavill merely expressed his excitement, saying, “This has been a very long journey for both of us, and we’ve both put everything we have into this.”

“For me, personally, this is a dream come true,” said Cavill, speaking about his role as if it was destiny. “To have this so close to being released is an incredibly exciting time for me. And I think I can speak for Lauren, who’d say the same, we just can’t wait for you guys to watch it all.”

Netflix’s The Witcher begins streaming on December 20. – Rappler.com