It’s no secret we’re big fans of Spartacus: Blood and Sand around here. We’ve talked about the show extensively and have also worried if it can return given the illness of star Andy Whitfield. Fortunately, reports now say that Whitfield is good to go and will be appearing at Comic-Con this week and then season two of the show. However, that didn’t stop Starz from going ahead with it’s planned prequel series anyway.
As we told you previously, the prequel, which is called Spartacus: God of the Arena, will be a six-part story chronicling the rise of the House of Batiatus and the first gladiator to be champion of Capua now it has a star and two supporting players. Dustin Clare, a virtual unknown in the U.S., but a popular TV actor in his native Australia, has landed the lead. Jaime Murray and Marisa Ramirez are also now set to co-star as well.
Reprising their roles from Spartacus: Blood and Sand are Lucy Lawless (Lucretia), John Hannah (Batiatus), Peter Mensah (Oenomaus) and Manu Bennett (Crixus). Murray will play Gaia, Lucretia’s (Lawless) friend and a Capua social climber. Ramirez will play a beautiful slave girl with complicated relationships. Spartacus himself, Andy Whitfield, will also appear briefly in the prequel, which is slated to begin production in August in New Zealand for a January premiere on Starz.
Then, Whitfield will rejoin Spartacus: Blood and Sand for season two, which is set to begin production later this year. So, look for both of these shows coming soon — but not soon enough.