Netflix, just like everyone else in the business, has been developing a show that might rival Game of Thrones. It’s called The Witcher, and just like Thrones, it’s based on a series of books that have a huge fan base — moreover, these books inspired a series of popular video games. Netflix has been sharing more details about The Witcher in the past few months, stopping short of revealing the series’ actual launch date.
Until a few days ago, all we knew about The Witcher’s premiere date was that it’s happening before the end of the year. Then, a leak came in saying that season one would launch on November 1st. The source was a Giovanni Eūgene Altamarquéz, a purported Netflix executive producer, who posted details about The Witcher production on Twitter. Netflix now denies everything, and Altamarquéz might not even be associated with the company in any way.
The original report that mentioned the TV series’ launch date went viral on Reddit, and Netflix apparently reached out to set the record straight:
We have been informed (by Netflix themselves oddly enough) that the supposed Netflix employee in “executive production” listed in the article does not actually work for Netflix and as such, this news is confirmed as being false. Given the spread of this article already, we feel that leaving it up and tagging it is the best way to let people know about it being fake. Basically, Pandora’s Box was already opened, and this is the best way we can stem the tide somewhat.
Altamarquéz’s Twitter has been deleted, Player One says, although his LinkedIn and Medium profiles still claim he has been with Netflix for over five years.
Whether it’s real or fake, a November release date would make sense for The Witcher, given the massive interest around the show. That’s because Disney’s streaming platform launches in mid-November in America and a few other markets, and The Witcher could help Netflix steer the conversation away from Disney+.
Other studios are working on different Game of Thrones replacements, including Amazon (Carnival Row is already out, Lord of the Rings is in pre-production) and HBO (His Dark Materials, Game of Thrones spinoff), but it’s The Witcher that seems best positioned to benefit from the vacuum Thrones left behind.