Spartacus: War of the Damned is the title of the third and final season of Spartacus, a New Zealand produced, Starz television series, which follows Spartacus: Vengeance and Spartacus: Blood and Sand.
The inspiration behind this series is the Thracian Gladiator Spartacus, who led a slave uprising against the Roman Republic. The Thracians had been persuaded by Claudius Glaber to serve as auxiliaries in the Roman legions in a campaign against the Getae, who had often plundered Thracian lands. However after Glaber reneges on the deal and switches his attentions from the Getae to attack Mithridates in Asia Minor, the Thracians feel betrayed and mutiny. Captured by Glaber, Spartacus is condemned to death as a Gladiator, whilst his wife Sura is condemned to slavery. Spartacus, however, proves to be a formidable gladiator, and defeats the four gladiators tasked with executing him. He becomes a favorite of the crowd, leading Senator Albinius to commute his death sentence to a life of slavery. Spartacus is purchased by Batiatus for gladiator training, who promises to help him find Sura if he proves himself in training. As the series develops, the story follows the betrayals and machinations… Written by WellardRockard
- Recent research on Gladiator tombs in present day Turkey indicate that the fighters may have been on vegetarian diets, that likely consisted of grains and beans that would increase their body sizes around their abdomens. This essentially added a layer of body fat and muscle to protect their internal organs when stabbed or sliced. Some murals depict gladiators with literal barrel-like chests.
- According to historians, 2/3rds of gladiators survived their matches.
- Andy Whitfield (Spartacus) has stated numerous times that the reason his on screen friendship with Jai Courtney (Varro) felt genuine was because it was- they were inseparable on set.
- The character of Varro (Jai Courtney) was originally planned to be killed in the fourth episode.
- In September 2010, Andy Whitfield (Spartacus) announced that he would not be able to appear in the second season because he had been diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin lymphoma and was pursuing aggressive medical treatment. In January 2011, the Starz network announced that Australian actor Liam McIntyre had been chosen to replace Whitfield as Spartacus. In September 2011, Whitfield died at the age of 39.
- During a behind the scenes interview at Comic Con, Liam McIntyre quipped that the hardest part of playing Spartacus was trying to reign his “inner nerd” in.
- The character Barca (“The Beast of Carthage”) shares the name of Hannibal Barca, the Carthaginian general who crossed the Alps on Elephant back to attack Rome. Hannibal also had a younger brother named Mago, in the episode “Legends”, it is revealed that Barca earned his title by slaying the leader of his people, named “Mago”, who was rumored to have also been Barca’s father.
- Viva Bianca and Hanna Mangan Lawrence have co-starred before in X: Night of Vengeance.
- Viva Bianca and Jai Courtney had previously attended Drama School together and were close friends in Australia. They didn’t know each other was cast in Spartacus until they reunited on set.
- It took 12 hours to shoot the sex scene between Ilithyia and Spartacus.
- Despite this being an American series, the only actors who are American are Katrina Law (Mira) and Nick Tarabay (Ashur). Erin Cummings (Sura) is also American.
- Viva Bianca described her character, Ilithyia, as a “valley girl.”
- Liam McIntyre was severely underweight from another role when he went into the “gladiator boot camp” for the series.
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