First impressions are hard to shake, especially when it comes to a first visual representation of a novel. For example, after watching those first Harry Potter films, many readers, myself included, had a hard time visualizing anyone else but the main cast while reading the books, and to those who had only seen the films, that’s the only visual representation they ever knew.
For Netflix’s upcoming series The Witcher, they’re facing a potentially more difficult problem. They have a popular novel series that became an even more popular video game series. As it stands, the video games are the only visual representations fans have seen, and to many fans in general, the video game is their only exposure to the story to date. This means that no matter what the TV show does, even if it’s novel-accurate, it could very well be seen negatively by fans attached to what the video game did.
This would seemingly potentially have a bit of an effect on the creation of the TV show. THR recently sat down with The Witcher showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissirch, and in their discussions, they brought up the question of how much the games muddy the water in terms of their creative vision:
“It does muddy the water a little bit for me. I’m a huge fan of the games. That being said, what I really tried to steer away from is that the video games right now are the sole visual representation of these stories and we needed to create our own visual representation. As I’ve been developing the series I’ve actually pulled back from playing the video games because I wanted to make sure the show we were creating was its own unique thing.”
My main question is what gamers will think. Gamers themselves are some of the most passionate fans out there, and even if they’re wrong about whether or not a character is faithful to the source material, you know they’ll be the first ones to cry out when a decision is made they don’t like. I just hope it doesn’t crush the creative spirit over there at Netflix.
Do you think Hissrich made the right choice is staying away from the video game? Let me know down the comments!
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