The Witcher: Wild Hunt is less than a week away, and Game of Thrones is halfway through its first season without Tywin Lannister. Those who might be missing the delightfully terrifying presence of Lord Lannister will be pleased to know that Charles Dance will be voicing an equally ruthless and pragmatic character in the upcoming Witcher video game: Emhyr var Emreis, Emperor of Nilfgaard.
Who is Emhyr var Emreis?
Emhyr var Emreis was born heir to the Nilfgaardian throne. But before he could rightfully inherit his father’s lands he was cursed and ousted by a usurper. Condemned to transform into a hideous monster every night, Emhyr left his home and adopted the simple alias of “Duny”. But years later, with the help of his future wife Pavetta, and Geralt the Witcher, the curse was broken.
Afterward, he planned to announce his true identity and reclaim Nilfgaard. But before he ascended to power his wife Pavetta died suddenly and tragically (some whisper this was his own doing), and his daughter Ciri became unreachable. Once back on the throne, Emhyr ruthlessly punished the wizard who cursed him (the words “deep fried” were used to describe what happened), and set about forcibly expanding his territory.
Emhyr has used assassination when battle failed, waged wars against the North, and seen a loving relationship end in tragedy. His daughter also happens to be called the Lion Cub. Any of this sound like a certain Lord in Westeros?
Why is Charles Dance a good fit?
Charles Dance has played as two ancient vampires, a rebellious archbishop, a witchfinder, a founding member of a Thieves Guild, and of course, the Hand of the King and De Facto ruler of Westeros. His past work makes him uniquely qualified for the dark fantasy world of The Witcher. With that in mind, Dance is an ideal fit, given that his voice is still fresh in our minds as that of Tywin Lannister, and will amplify the already authoritarian air of Emperor Emhyr.
Though this is Dance’s first work in video games, the lead writer of the Witcher 3 said, “Charles Dance is the perfect candidate to play the mighty Nilfgaardian emperor in our upcoming title. It’s a dream come true for the team here at RED to be able to work with such an accomplished actor and magnetic personality.”
What will he be doing in the Witcher 3?
Unfortunately not much has been revealed at this point. It is safe to say that he will be hiring Geralt’s services. And that the tasks he expects the Witcher to fulfill will be finding his daughter Ciri, saving her from the Wild Hunt, and ultimately returning her to him. During a trailer, Geralt asks what he plans to do once she is back within his reach. In a tone of chilling ambiguity, the Emperor replied with, “I shall give her what she deserves.”