Everything we know about Netflix’s rumored Witcher spinoff The Rats

The Witcher. Cr: Netflix.
The Witcher. Cr: Netflix. /

Netflix has been trying its hardest to make a big, epic, dark fantasy universe out of The Witcher, one that could rival Game of Thrones. They’ve been met with varying degrees of success, though the streamer has definitely had better luck with the main series than with its spinoffs.

Even though The Witcher: Blood Origin wasn’t well-received, Netflix has reportedly moved forward with its plans to make another live-action spinoff series; this one centered on the controversial outlaw gang from Andrzej Sapkowski’s books known as “The Rats.”

While Netflix has not officially revealed the show’s existence, Redanian Intelligence and other outlets like CBR have been following the production. The show is allegedly going by the codename “Riff Raff” for now.

Fans of the books know the Rats as a group of criminals first introduced in Time of Contempt featuring Asse, Iskra, Kayleigh, Mistle, Reef, and Falka.

In Time of Contempt, Ciri meets the Rats shortly after making it through the Korath Desert. It looks like the show is poised to follow the same set-up in the final two episodes of The Witcher season 3. We met Mistle in the first part of The Witcher season 3, but we expect to meet the rest of the Rats in part 2, which will be released on July 27.

Has Netflix formally announced The Rats spinoff?

No, it’s important to note that Netflix has not formally announced the spinoff series, but given all the information available, it seems like it is legitimately happening. However, recent developments indicate Netflix might be reconsidering its approach to the spinoff, but more on that below.

Who is reportedly in The Rats cast?

According to Redanian Intelligence, The Rats will feature all six members of the outlaw gang.

If you’ve already watched The Witcher season 3 part 1, you’ve met Christelle Elwin’s character, Mistle. Mistle was formerly part of a wealthy noble family until she was forced to flee during a rebellion. She and Ciri form a close relationship.

The outlet also reports that Swedish star Dolph Lundgren of Rocky IV fame has been cast as the rogue witcher named Brehen and was supposedly on set for the majority of filming.

Cast list:

  • Christelle Elwin as Mistle
  • Ben Radcliffe as Giselher
  • Fabian McCallum as Kayleigh
  • Aggy K. Adams as Iskra
  • Juliette Alexandra as Reef
  • Connor Crawford as Asse
  • Dolph Lundgren as Brehen

Does The Rats have a release date?

No, since Netflix hasn’t formally announced the show yet, there is no release date, and we shouldn’t expect one anytime soon. Netflix seems to be trying to release at least one project in The Witcher universe per year.

We probably won’t get The Witcher season 4 until 2025 at the earliest, so there is a good chance Netflix will aim to release The Rats in 2024 to fill the gap between Witcher seasons, similar to what they did with The Witcher: Blood Origin.

The Rats filming updates

Redanian Intelligence reports that filming wrapped on The Rats on July 1, 2023, after a shortened timeframe. The series was supposed to film for five to six months but finished after two, suggesting a shorter runtime.

The Witcher: Blood Origin also had its episode count cut short. However, unlike The Rats, Blood Origin filmed the entire time it was supposed to and then went back for reshoots, whereas this series wrapped filming early, meaning it might be much shorter or could even be turned into a movie instead of a series.

The article linked above also includes a photo of what looks like a legitimate wrap gift and a message from the development team thanking everyone for their hard work and sharing excitement for diving into post-production.

Where were The Rats filmed?

The show was reportedly filmed in Cape Town, specifically at the Cape Town Film Studios and some areas outside the port city.

Will Freya Allan appear as Ciri in The Rats?

Per Redanian Intelligence’s intel, no one has spotted Freya Allan on the set, so it doesn’t seem likely that a Ciri cameo is intended for the spinoff show.

How many episodes will The Rats be?

Initially, it sounded like there would be six to eight episodes of The Rats, but now that filming has reportedly been shortened significantly, it seems like it might only be three or four episodes. It’s also possible that Netflix could edit the content into a film and forgo making a series altogether.

Stay tuned to Netflix Life for more information on The Witcher universe.

dark. Next. All things related to The Witcher