Netflix's The Witcher series finally has its main cast revealed and production is close to beginning but as the project moves forward, Showrunner Lauren S. Hissrich wanted to reiterate her stance on remaining true to the series' Polish roots.
A lot of the concern over source material came from a 'leak' earlier this year that pointed towards a casting call for Ciri. According to the initial rumor, the team was looking for a woman of color to play the character and even the large part of the Polish community came out against the rumored decision.
Now we know who our Ciri is, but Hissrich wanted to pivot back to the original cultural concerns in a recent interview with Hollywood Reporter. She told the site, "One of the things I feel most strongly about is people being afraid that we’re going to strip out the cultural context of The Witcher, to remove its Slavic roots, the very thing people in Poland are proud of. That couldn’t be further from the truth. What I’ve always wanted to do is take these Slavic stories and give them a global audience."
Though variants from source material is nothing new, fans of The Witcher novels - which is what the series is based upon - instantly took up arms against the show over the rumors. Many called for a ban of the show, while others simply voiced their displeasure. Though the books do mention one line regarding her "pale skin" and ashen hair, other fans are just excited to see Ciri come to life in another medium.
Unlike previous casting deviations, the source material in question here comes from Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski and the wild success of his tale - in no small part due to CD Projekt RED's video game adaptation - has become a creative mark of pride. Because of this many native Polish gamers are speaking out about the alleged casting direction, some even calling it a "molestation" of their culture.
Given her previous promise that they were going to be working closely with the source material in the books themselves, paired with the fact that all major decisions will have the author himself involved, the Netflix series does show a lot of promise.