AUSXIP The House of Batiatus
Spartacus Mini-Series

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        12 May 2010

The Hollywood Reporter Spartacus Prequel Cover 12 May 2010

ImageThe Hollywood Reporter has the news about the Spartacus prequel but that's not what had me a little excited. It's the front cover of the print The Hollywood Reporter that made smile. Lucy and John are featured on the front; top left hand corner.

The Hollywood Reporter
12 May 2010

Summer start for Starz prequel
Starz hails ‘Spartacus’ with six-part prequel

ImageNEW YORK — Starz will air a six-part prequel to its original series “Spartacus: Blood and Sand” in January, with Andy Whitfield, who plays the title character, making a brief appearance.

Lucy Lawless (Lucretia) and John Hannah (Batiatus) will take center stage in the story of the rise of the House of Batiatus and its champions before Spartacus. The title has not been determined, but the prequel will begin production in the summer in New Zealand. Production on the second season of “Spartacus” has been delayed because of Whitfield’s cancer.

Tuesday’s news comes days after Starz president and CEO Chris Albrecht said during an earnings conference call that the premium TV network operator was looking to keep the “Spartacus” franchise going in creative ways in Whitfield’s absence.

In the prequel, Hannah returns as owner of the Ludus, and Lawless again plays his wife. Besides other returning characters, new ones will be added, including the gladiator who was champion of the House of Batiatus before Spartacus.

Season 2 of “Spartacus” was postponed this spring to allow Whitfield to be treated for non-Hodgkin lymphoma in New Zealand. His doctors have indicated that the actor is responding well, Starz said.

“The prequel story maintains the excitement and entertainment value of the first season of ‘Spartacus,’ giving audiences the engaging experience they’ve come to expect,” Albrecht said. “Fortunately, Andy is responding to his treatments and will be able to be part of this prequel in a limited capacity. As soon as he’s able, we look forward to continuing the Spartacus story.” ?

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