Every live-action entry in Netflix’s Witcher Cinematic Universe (WCU) so far has come with a major casting. It began with Henry Cavill’s Geralt casting in the flagship series, Kristofer Hivju in Season 2 and was followed by Michelle Yeoh in the prequel show Blood Origin. The latest Witcher spinoff now in production in South Africa, codenamed “Riff Raff” but referred to internally as “Rats” will be no different.
We can confirm that the show has cast action legend Dolph Lundgren in a key role. The news broke out following an interview with Aftonbladet in which Lundgren himself, who is recovering from cancer, confirmed that he is feeling much better and is currently in South Africa filming the series.
This did not come as a surprise for us, as we have already suspected Lundgren could be involved with the spinoff series.
Lundgren is well known for the role of Ivan Drago in the Rocky franchise (including an appearance in the follow-up Creed films), with more recent appearances in films such as Aquaman and Sharknado. As his repertoire suggests, Lundgren is sure to bring that raw physical energy over to the WCU, and is perhaps just what the “Rats” spinoff show needed.
The Rats are a group of teenagers who are victims of Nilfgaard’s war to conquer the Continent, and their paths will collide with Freya Allan’s Ciri at the very end of The Witcher‘s upcoming third season.
The “Rats” spinoff will be a prequel series set before Ciri meets this ragged band of angsty teens, although a cameo by Freya Allan wouldn’t be impossible (see Joey Batey’s Jaskier cameo in Blood Origin for an idea of what to expect).
As reported earlier, the synopsis for the series is as follows: “Six teenage thieves must rely on their criminal skills as they plan the biggest heist of their careers against the most dangerous crime ring in the kingdom.”
Though we have not confirmed this officially just yet, we suspect that Lundgren may have been cast in the role of Leo Bonhart, a vicious mercenary who has an iconic confrontation with the Rats in the novels. Assuming we are correct, Lundgren would be sure to reprise his role in Season 4 of The Witcher.
The Witcher Season 3 will drop its first five episodes on June 29, but we will have to wait for the second and final batch of episodes to drop on July 27 to meet the Rats. Meanwhile, the show has begun filming in South Africa, so stay tuned for more news.