Will The Witcher Lead to Other Books Being Repurposed for Television?
Netflix – one of the most successful companies around right now – is getting ready to release The Witcher later this year. The fantasy epic will be the streaming service’s attempt at matching or bettering the success of HBO’s Game of Thrones. During an era in which sequel culture is predominant, the series starring Henry Cavill will have the hugely successful console games from CD Projekt Red as a springboard and a way to attract viewers. In turn, the series could lead more readers to the lesser-known book universe in the same way Game of Thrones led readers to seek out A Song of Ice and Fire. If The Witcher is popular, what other books could be made into television series?
Game of Thrones is the Model to Follow
When HBO first decided to adapt George RR. Martin’s series of books, the general consensus was that the company was taking a huge gamble. A Game of Thrones was published in 1996 but it didn’t become a New York Times bestseller until 2011, which was in conjunction with the release of the series. After eight hugely successful seasons, it turned out to be the correct decision by the broadcaster, and the series has set a model for others to follow.
In addition to bringing worldwide attention to the incredible books, the franchise has spilled out into other sections of the media. Aside from tours of some of the filming locations, there are board games including a Game of Thrones version of Monopoly. For iGaming fans, there is the Game of Thrones slot made by Microgaming, and console players can enjoy the Game of Thrones RPG from Telltale Games. Allowing the franchise to spill out into other media like this helped the epic fantasy reach as many people as possible.
The Witcher Already has Massive Franchise Potential
When The Witcher hits screens in December, it will have an advantage over Game of Thrones in its early days. The franchise is already in place, and there have been three Witcher RPGs to date. The first instalment of the trilogy was released in 2009, and the most successful, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, came out in 2015. The latter game won numerous Game of the Year awards and shipped 20 million copies. The new series also features Cavill, a hugely popular actor thanks to his role in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. This will be a major pull.
In addition to the open-world fantasy games, there is a digital, free-to-play card game called Gwent which uses all of the characters from the universe. The games weren’t a direct representation of the book series by Andrzej Sapkowski, which comprises of two short story collections and five novels. However, the television series is said to be following them more closely, so fans will be able to experience a whole new side of Geralt of Rivia’s world. This, in turn, could lead to yet more games and other merchandise.
Kingkiller Chronicle Could be Next
Even though sequel culture is prevalent at the moment, fantasy offerings based on books could potentially be successful because everyone is hungry to watch the “next Game of Thrones.” Amazon is getting set to release its Lord of the Rings series, and other developers are busy coming up with ideas.
One popular book series which has been highlighted as a potential series in the near future is The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss. The American author has thus far released The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man’s Fear in 2007 and 2011 respectively, with the forthcoming The Doors of Stone set to conclude the trilogy. Over 10 million copies of the books have been sold to date, and Rothfuss has received numerous accolades including the 2007 Quill Award. Rothfuss’s writing style and attention to detail have been praised by Game of Thrones author Martin, which gives an indication of the quality. The vivid world that Rothfuss has created would provide more than enough material to create a series.
There are plenty of other epic fantasies which could easily be adapted for television. Some have already been given the green light, such as The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan. The Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson is set for the silver screen. Both of these titles also have huge franchise potential, and could easily lead to games and merchandise.