When Spartacus: Blood and Sand premiered on television last year it was met with much critical praise. It was a mix of Gladiator and 300 and pushed the boundaries of television. Filled with violence, sex, blood and gore, the show attracted a more mature audience. Due to the success of the show, a prequel was announced, Spartacus: Gods of the Arena.
News comes to us today from The Hollywood Reporter that the upcoming show has been cast. Dustin Clare has been cast as Gannicus. Gannicus is a gladiator in the House of Batiatus and was the champion before Spartacus arrived. Jamie Murray will play a ‘Capua social climber’ and Marisa Ramirez will play a slave.
Andy Whitfield, the star of Spartacus: Blood and Sand will make a brief appearance.
Next month the show will go into production and six episodes will be shot. The expected release date is January. Season two of Blood and Sand will premiere some time in 2011 and will shoot after Gods of the Arena.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Gods of the Arena will revolve around the following story:
In the prequel, Batiatus (John Hannah) is not yet the head of his family or of the gladiator training school. Gannicus is the lead gladiator in the Ludus, but the House of Batiatus hasn’t earned social respect or the right for its gladiators to fight in championship bouts. Gannicus struggles to turn around the House’s luck.
I loved season one of Spartacus: Blood and Sand and I’m pretty excited for both season two of the show and the prequel, Gods of the Arena. I’m hoping Gods of the Arena will be similar to Blood and Sand in that it will take that ‘hold nothing back’ approach. Blood and Sand got pretty extreme and over the top at times but that’s what it made it so entertaining. I hope the prequel follows the same route.