Monday, January 17, 2011

McIntyre Makes The Cut For "Spartacus"

According to Starz, LLC, President and CEO Chris Albrecht, Australian film/TV actor Liam McIntyre has been cast in the title role in the second season of "Spartacus".

McIntyre takes over the role of the 'Thracian' warrior sold into slavery in the Roman Republic city of 'Capua' – where he rises to become the champion of the city – before leading the slave revolt that ended Season 1. The part was played in the first season of "Spartacus: Blood and Sand" by Andy Whitfield, who left the series, due to health issues.

"Since no one can really replace Andy, we realized that we should instead find an actor who can truly lead 'Spartacus' forward," said Albrecht.

McIntyre previously appeared in the Australian TV series "Neighbours", as well as the HBO mini-series "The Pacific."

Production on "Spartacus" is slated to resume Spring 2011.

"Spartacus: Gods of the Arena," is the six-part prequel that tells the story of the 'House of Batiatus' gladiator school, and the intricate personal, sexual and political maneuverings in 'Capua' five years before "Blood and Sand".

The new mini-series debuts Friday, Jan. 21 on Starz.

Added to the cast are Jaime Murray as social climber 'Gaia', Marisa Ramirez as the slave 'Melitta' and Jeffrey Thomas as 'Titus', the father of 'Batiatus'.

They join returning cast members John Hannah as 'Quintus Batiatus', Lucy Lawless as 'Lucretia', Peter Mensah as 'Oenomaus', (before he becomes gladiator trainer 'Doctore') and Manu Bennett as 'Crixus'.

"...As the prequel begins, 'Quintus Batiatus' is the acting 'Lanista' while his father 'Titus' is on an extended visit to Sicilia.

"But Batiatus isn’t satisfied with just the thought of taking over the Ludus one day; he aspires to political power and prestige in 'Capua' and perhaps beyond.

"In the class-conscious world of ancient Rome, the 'House of Batiatus' must first earn the respect of both politicians and socialites before being granted the right for its gladiators to fight in the much-revered championship bouts called the 'Primus'.

"Batiatus must not only survive the harsh politics of Capua, but also compel his hedonistic fighter, 'Gannicus', to embrace being a champion gladiator who will bring esteem and respect to the House of Batiatus..."

"Spartacus: Gods of the Arena" is produced by Rob Tapert, Sam Raimi, Joshua Donen and Steven S. DeKnight.

Season One of "Spartacus: Blood and Sand" was the highest rated show for the 18-49 demographic among all cable networks for the 12 Fridays on which it aired, based on coverage rating.

Click the images to enlarge and Sneak Peek
"Spartacus: Gods of the Arena"...