There’s been three whole seasons of swords, sandals, sex and bloodshed in the Spartacus series (remember there’s a marathon coming later this summer), each jumping around in different time periods, but now it sounds like Starz is bringing it to an end. Today to cable network announced a new season of the series called Spartacus: War of the Damned which will be the final season of the series.
In fact, the new season is already in production in New Zealand with Liam McIntyre reprising the title role and Manu Bennett (Crixus), Dustin Clare (Gannicus), Dan Feuerriegel (Agron), Cynthia Addai-Robinson (Naevia) and Ellen Hollman (Saxa) all returning as well. The final chapter of the series takes place following the defeat of Roman commander Gaius Claudius Glaber. Spartacus and his men have amassed major victories against the Romans after the Battle of Vesuvius. These victories have not only forged the legend of Spartacus, but have greatly increased the ranks of the rebellion slaves to more than 30,000. Rome is indeed beginning to tremble at the threat Spartacus now represents. Hit the jump for more.
I suppose with that marathon coming this summer, it’s no surprise that Starz is making this announcement now. Otherwise, there’s not much point in recapping the entire series this summer. The new season is scheduled to begin airing new episodes in January 2013 along with new cast members including Todd Lasance as Gaius Julius Caesar, Simon Merrells as Marcus Crassus and Anna Hutchison as Laeta. Hopefully they send Spartacus out with a bloody bang and leave fans satisfied. I’m sure there will be disappointed viewers out there, but it’s better that the series is ending on its own terms rather than getting cancelled suddenly at a low point.
Here’s the full press release for Spartacus: War of the Damned:
Beverly Hills, Calif. – Date June 4, 2012 – STARZ announced today the upcoming season of the international hit series “Spartacus” will be the conclusion of the saga. With a visual style completely unique to television, the franchise has amassed both critical and popular acclaim to become the most successful on the network and one of the highest rated programs in all of cable television. More than six million weekly viewers watched last season, “Spartacus: Vengeance,” which has amassed more than 2.5 million Facebook fans. Globally, the series airs in 150 countries in more than 15 languages.
“The fans have been tremendously supportive of our show,” says creator and executive producer, Steven S. DeKnight. “We did not come to this decision lightly. It was an extremely difficult and emotional decision for my partners and I. Yet, in the end, the story was best served by rolling all of the remaining action and drama of Spartacus’ journey into one stunningly epic season that will be extremely satisfying for everyone who’s been along for the ride.”
“Steven DeKnight, Rob Tapert, Josh Donen and Sam Raimi have made one of the most groundbreaking shows we have ever seen,” says Starz CEO Chris Albrecht. “’Spartacus’ is a landmark series for the network which has enthralled millions of viewers and fans around the world. We are in agreement with our partners in the decision to conclude the story after ‘War of the Damned,’ as we believe it is the best way to maintain the integrity of the series and secure its legacy. While everyone may know the fate of Spartacus, we believe this will be a spectacular season that will startle, amaze and honor the legions of fans.”
“Spartacus: War of the Damned,” currently in production in New Zealand, takes place following the defeat of Roman commander Gaius Claudius Glaber. Spartacus and his men have amassed major victories against the Romans after the Battle of Vesuvius. These victories have not only forged the legend of Spartacus, but have greatly increased the ranks of the rebellion slaves to more than 30,000. Rome is indeed beginning to tremble at the threat Spartacus now represents.
The Emmy® nominated series, already known for its groundbreaking production and visual style, has set the bar even higher to bring the story to its epic conclusion. This year, new sets will include the construction of a full city, a Roman Villa, and the scene of the epic battle along the Appian Way.
Airing in 150 countries, the series is considered an unqualified smash around the world, including Brazil, England, France, Germany, Italy, Korea, Mexico, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Turkey, and more. The enormous international success has led to global licensing for a variety of rights, including: authentic prop replicas, publishing, soundtracks, motion comic books, trading cards, and a few more major deals soon to be announced.
In the US and abroad, the DVDs continue to be one of the most popular titles sold at all major retailers, appearing in the Top 10 of all TV titles sold.
The “Spartacus” franchise began its run Friday, January 22, 2010 with “Blood and Sand.” It was followed a year later with the prequel, “Gods of the Arena” (January 21, 2011). “Vengeance” hit the air on January 27, 2012 and “War of the Damned” is scheduled to air January 2013.
“Spartacus: War of the Damned” sees the return on Liam McIntyre (Spartacus), Manu Bennett (Crixus), Dustin Clare (Gannicus), Dan Feuerriegel (Agron), Cynthia Addai-Robinson (Naevia) and Ellen Hollman (Saxa). This year, Todd Lasance joins the cast as Gaius Julius Caesar, along with Simon Merrells, who will be playing Marcus Crassus and Anna Hutchison as Laeta.