Why is Henry Cavill leaving ‘The Witcher’?

The actor announced his departure in October 2022

The Witcher season three has arrived on Netflix, but this will be the last time fans get to see Henry Cavill in the role of Geralt Of Rivia.

Based on the successful fantasy book series and video games of the same name, The Witcher sees Cavill star as a magically super-powered monster hunter (known as a Witcher) who crosses paths with a powerful sorceress and a princess whose untapped magic is sought after by evil forces.

The official synopsis for season three reads: “As monarchs, mages, and beasts of the Continent compete to capture Ciri of Cintra, Geralt takes her into hiding, determined to protect his newly-reunited family against those who threaten to destroy it.”


Alongside Cavill, the series stars Anya Chalotra as sorceress Yennefer Of Vengerberg and Freya Allan as Princess Ciri.

This is, however, the last time Cavill will star in the series, with the actor set to be replaced by Liam Hemsworth for the already confirmed fourth and fifth seasons.

Why is Henry Cavill leaving The Witcher?

The Witcher season 3. Credit: Netflix

While Cavill has never given a precise reason for his departure, it has long been suspected that creative differences ultimately caused him to step away from the role.

The actor, who is a noted fan of the books and video games, has hinted for years that he wasn’t entirely happy with Geralt’s dialogue and the overall direction of the series.

In 2021, ahead of the release of the second season, the show’s producer Lauren Hissrich revealed that Cavill sent her several notes about Geralt’s dialogue.


“A lot of the notes he was sending to me were about Geralt’s dialogue — could he, first of all, say more,” Hissrich told The Hollywood Reporter. “Everybody came out of season 1 laughing and loving Geralt’s fuming. But Henry was saying that when you read the books you spend a lot of time in Geralt’s head. So how can we put that on the page?”

In an interview with Philstar, Cavill elaborated on the situation, saying: “It’s important for me to have the character be three-dimensional. And it’s tricky to do, as I was saying earlier, because there’s a certain vision and there’s a certain set storyline and plot. And so, it was about me trying to find Geralt’s place within that. All of my asks and requests were along the lines of just being faithful to the source material.”

Some fans had speculated that Cavill was leaving the series to focus on future DC projects, but that theory was thrown out after new studio boss James Gunn confirmed that the actor would not be returning as Superman.

Cavill announced his decision to leave The Witcher in October 2022, saying in a statement: “My journey as Geralt Of Rivia has been filled with both monsters and adventures, and alas, I will be laying down my medallion and my swords for season four.

“In my stead, the fantastic Mr Liam Hemsworth will be taking up the mantle of the White Wolf. As with the greatest of literary characters, I pass the torch with reverence for the time spent embodying Geralt and enthusiasm to see Liam’s take on this most fascinating and nuanced of men.”

Hissrich has described season three of The Witcher as a “heroic send off” to Cavill. “What is so interesting is that season three, to me, is the closest thing that we’ve done as a one-to-one adaptation of the books,” she added.

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