In an interview with Première magazine, production designer Andrew Laws and showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich talked about their vision for the grim and gritty series. Laws explained that the prevalence of computer-generated imagery, from the silver screen down to the small screen, means that audiences need to see something special to be immersed in the story. ‘If you create excellent CGI in one scene, you have to keep the same level of quality for all the others,’ he said.
With regards to The Witcher show, he remarked, ‘I don't want to see the actor play in front of a green screen, talking to a green ball. We wanted something real, even during fight sequences.’ This sentiment was echoed by Hissrich who stated that the show won’t be relying heavily upon CGI to deliver the unbelievable fantasy world of the Continent. ‘It was important for the show to have an authentic style,’ she explained. ‘A superb video game already exists, and I really didn't want our show to look like it.’
However, that isn’t to say that Netflix’s The Witcher has been exceptionally economical in its realisation. Roach won’t be played by two people in a costume, nor will the magical effect be accompanied by a musical twinkle and a puff of smoke. ‘We are not the poor cousin of Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones,’ Laws reassured fans. ‘Netflix has given us quite a lot to work with! We have filmed gigantic scenes, and we have given our series a production value worthy of the big screen.’
The series will draw from the events of the books rather than of the games, and its cast includes Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia, Anya Chalotra as Yennefer of Vengerberg, Freya Allan as Ciri and Joey Batey as Jaskier.