|THE WITCHERTHE WITCH|
Netflix will conduct a deep cleaning of “The Witcher” set after one of the fantasy series' actors tested positive for the coronavirus.
Kristofer Hivju, a “Game of Thrones” veteran who will appear in “The Witcher” Season 2, revealed that he had tested positive for the coronavirus in an Instagram post Monday. Around the same time, Netflix sent an email to the show's production team noting that an “individual” had contracted the virus. Though the company did not specify the individual, Deadline reported that it was Hivju.
Netflix told Deadline that it would immediately be closing production offices as well as Arborfield Studios, where the series is shot, and “arranging for deep cleaning and disinfection” of both. Netflix representative also stated the company was recommending “The Witcher” cast and crew self-quarantine for two weeks.
Netflix representatives did not return a request for comment. The company halted production on the series two weeks ago due to concerns about the coronavirus.
Despite testing positive for the virus, Hivju maintained a positive outlook on Instagram and told his 3.7 million followers that he only had mild symptoms. The actor, who portrayed Tormund Giantsbane in “Game of Thrones,” also urged others to practice social distancing and do what they can to stay healthy.
“My familiy and I are self-isolating at home for as long as it takes,” Hivju wrote on Instagram. “We are in good health — I only have mild symptoms of a cold. There are people at higher risk for who this virus might be a devastating diagnosis, so I urge all of you to be extremely careful.”
Hivju will portray Nivellen in “The Witcher” Season 2, a man who is cursed to take on a monstrous appearance in the franchise's lore.
“The Witcher” Season 1 hit Netflix last December and received an enthusiastic review from IndieWire's Ben Travers, who praised its performances and frequently ludicrous — albeit entertaining — premises. The series was also an apparent ratings hit and sparked renewed interest in the fantasy franchise, which is based on the books by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski.
“The Witcher” is one of an increasingly large number of film or TV productions that has been impacted by the coronavirus. Netflix stopped production on all scripted TV series in films in the U.S. and Canada due to the virus, and other companies ranging from Disney to Apple have similarly halted production on many of their upcoming projects.
IndieWire is keeping track of all the entertainment industry-related events and productions that have been disrupted by the coronavirus.