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The Witcher: Who Should Play Geralt of Rivia?

Everybody onto the casting couch

Kat Rosenfield

Now that the news has dropped that The Witcher is being adapted by Netflix as a new original series, the obvious next question is this: who's going to star in this epic monster-fighting fantasy?

The hero of The Witcher, Geralt of Rivia, is a fearsome, flaxen-haired warrior who wields two different blades in his quest to rid the world of evil. And whoever snags the role will need to whip himself into serious fighting condition (not to mention look good in a white-blonde wig.) Fortunately, there's no shortage of talented actors who could play Geralt, including several who already know their way around a sword. We've rounded up five potential picks; who's yours?

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau

Lena Headey, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau; Game of Thrones
Helen Sloan/HBO

If the primary goal is to get a new Geralt of Rivia who looks as much as humanly possible like all the previous Geralts, there's no better pick. A strong jawline, a fierce glare, a certain degree of comfort with a blade: Coster-Waldau has it all. And if he's ready to hold down a fantasy series where he can play a fearsome warrior who isn't sleeping with his sister, this would be a natural next step after Game of Thrones.

Alexander Skarsgård

HBO, Lalo Yasky/Getty Images

Alexander Skarsgård is big on small-screen roles, most recently as a member of the star-studded ensemble cast on HBO's Big Little Lies. But thanks to his Viking flashback episodes on True Blood, we know that Skarsgård makes a terrific warrior, and looks quite fabulous in a long, blonde wig. Maybe he'd like to put one back on.

Djimon Hounsou

David Livingston/Getty Images

Because Geralt of Rivia's signature white hair is supposed to be the result of exposure to experimental mutagens during his witcher training (as opposed to, say, Nordic ancestry), the door is certainly open for non-white actors to snag this role -- and it's high time that Hounsou got to anchor an epic sword-fighting fantasy as the hero, not the sidekick.

Jesse Williams

Richard Cartwright/ABC

Jesse Williams has been playing a doctor on television for nearly ten years, which would make a starring role in The Witcher an absolutely epic pivot. Plus, the only thing better than a Witcher series on Netflix is a Witcher series in which Geralt of Rivia is just really, ridiculously, obscenely good-looking.

Kristofer Hivju


Another Game of Thrones actor who will likely be on the hunt for work when the series ends (or sooner, depending on whether Tormund Gianstbane becomes a casualty of one of the show's various upcoming wars.) We know he can swing a sword, and furthermore, there is literally nothing in the existing Witcher canon that says Geralt of Rivia can't look like a wild-eyed ginger Gandalf, so why not.

The Witcher on Netflix does not yet have a release date.