Season 1 of the Netflix series The Witcher was filmed in different countries across Central and Eastern Europe, including Hungary, Austria, Spain, and Poland. Though the location shots filmed in these countries were already breathtaking in their own, most of them were still enhanced by visual effects to achieve the rough and shadowy tone of the fantasy series. And in case you’re wondering how exactly it’s done, visual effects company Framestore recently released a VFX breakdown of some of the works they did for the first season of the Henry Cavill-led series.
The four-minute clip shows how the final look of Cintra, Sodden Hill, and Aretuza were created. Aside from building up key locations in The Continent, Framestore also made some of the visual effects in the infamous Slaughter of Cintra and the Battle of Sodden Hill. The company was also behind the VFX in the thrilling fight scene between Geralt of Rivia (Cavill) and Renfri’s (Emma Appeton) gang in Blaviken in the first episode of the series.
“One of Framestore’s main roles on the show was to help establish the look and feeling of The Continent, the world that The Witcher inhabits with a series of digitally enhanced and fully digital environments,” Framestore’s website states. “As the creative studio’s role grew, it became responsible for the design of several locations including the dark and gritty city of Cintra and the cliff-side fortress of Aretuza and an Elven stronghold.”
Since The Witcher is such a visual effects-heavy show, Framestore is just one of the many VFX companies that Netflix is working with to produce the series. Another one is Cinesite Studios, which has also released a VFX breakdown of the works they did in the first season of the series.
Unlike Framestore, Cinesite’s VFX works in The Witcher were mostly focused on the monsters and creatures featured the series. For instance, Cinesite was the one responsible for the final look of the Kikimora, the Striga, and the golden dragon.
Season 2 of The Witcher was supposed to premiere sometime in 2021, but since its production has been halted due to the coronavirus pandemic, its release date is likely to be pushed back at a later date.