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There's not much information on the show at this time, but let's begin the speculation.


Starz Declares - "We Are 'Spartacus!'"


Starz Productions and Raimi/Tapert/Donen to Create an All New Action Series Exclusive to Starz Channels and Additional Platforms


Premium Service Continues Push Into Original Drama and Comedy Series That Pair With Lineup of Top Hollywood Feature Films


BURBANK, Calif. and ENGLEWOOD, Colo., Oct. 27 -- The world of gladiators comes to life as the Roman Empire's most brutal fighters clash in the ultimate arena. Starz's new series, "Spartacus," an entirely new twist on the ancient legend, will utilize virtual environments giving it a unique graphic novel look and style, along with a fresh narrative approach. Debuting exclusively on Starz, "Spartacus" will be produced by Starz Media with Executive Producers Sam Raimi, Rob Tapert and Joshua Donen. The announcement was made today by Stephan Shelanski, executive vice president, programming, for Starz Entertainment. It will begin production in early 2009, debuting on Starz and its suite of channels later in the year.


This is the second original drama series on Starz, and the first drama produced in-house by the premium service's studio sibling, headed by William Hamm, executive vice president, originals productions. Hamm brought the project to the channel.


Steven S. DeKnight ("Smallville," "Buffy the Vampire Slayer") has been signed as head writer and show-runner of the series, which was developed by Raimi (Spider-Man, Spider-Man 2, Spider-Man 3 and Evil Dead), Tapert (The Grudge, "Xena: Warrior Princess" and "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys") and Donen (The Quick and the Dead) and is being produced in New Zealand by Starz Media's Starz Productions. DeKnight is one of the most sought after Producer/Director/Writers in television and is currently consulting on Joss Whedon's "Dollhouse" and tapped to write for the upcoming season eight in the Buffy the Vampire Slayer comic book series.


From the talented team responsible for some of the biggest action feature film hits, and consistently popular action TV series, "Spartacus" will take the story of the rebellious warrior-slave and re-imagine it for a generation of TV viewers raised on graphic novels and cutting-edge production technology. Audiences will get 13 hour-long episodes of unsparing action, set in the brutal world of gladiators. Because the series is being produced for Starz -- the fastest-growing premium television service -- there is no shortage of intense action and vivid, R-rated storytelling. This will be a TV series with an original narrative and a very unique look and feel.


"When 'Spartacus' debuts in the summer of 2009, it will give our subscribers a show unlike anything currently on TV: a fresh, high-energy action series with nothing held back," Shelanski said. "We think it will be the destination show for next summer. It, along with our other original productions underscores our commitment to being a new kind of TV company, programming the biggest movies and the best new television series."


"By utilizing the latest digital filmmaking techniques to create the look of this series, we'll be able to tell the story in a way never before seen with production values far beyond what even the most ambitious TV series can offer," Tapert said. Raimi added "It is going to be very exciting to take one of the most beloved and inspiring characters of all time, re-invent and bring them to life for a whole new generation of TV viewers."


Starz's new "Spartacus" series was inspired by the actual slave of the Roman Republic who in 73 BC led a slave revolt that grew to more than 120,000 fighters. Defying the Roman Republic's legions of soldiers, they campaigned for two years through much of what is now Italy before succumbing to a much larger army. The new series will tell a new set of stories rich in character, action, sex and combat.


Starz Media's Anchor Bay Entertainment will hold exclusive worldwide home entertainment distribution rights to "Spartacus," while the company's Worldwide Distribution group will handle international television and domestic syndication sales.


"Spartacus" is just the latest original series for Starz. Its first dramatic series, "Crash," a co-production from Starz Entertainment and Lionsgate, premiered Oct. 17. Starz Media will also produce "Party Down" for Starz, debuting in early 2009, the companies announced recently. These come on the heels of Starz's original half-hour comedy series, "Head Case," which stars Alexandra Wentworth and is currently in production on additional episodes. Starz also features "Starz Inside," a monthly series of original specials examining people, trends and culture in entertainment, hosted by film critic Richard Roeper.
 

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D* has several vignettes on VOD about the show now.
 

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Been looking forward it since it was announced. although, if I compare it to 'Rome', I'm afraid I'm going to be disappointed - that's going to be a tough one to live up to.


I will go in trying to enjoy the show on its own merits.


Stryker, your 'Chuck' friend is going to be on the show? Good for her!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doctor /forum/post/15432672


BURBANK, Calif. and ENGLEWOOD, Colo., Oct. 27 -- The world of gladiators comes to life as the Roman Empire's most brutal fighters clash in the ultimate arena. Starz's new series, "Spartacus," an entirely new twist on the ancient legend, will utilize virtual environments giving it a unique graphic novel look and style, along with a fresh narrative approach.

I saw the trailer for this today on Encore (not the same as the web preview) and the only thing I kept thinking was "this is 300, the TV show."


They really overdid the slow-motion-freeze-frame action sequences and the design look and feel is exactly the same as 300. So unique is not something I would call it. A pity because the idea seems like it could be interesting, but it's going to be constantly compared to 300 because they basically copied the entire style of the movie. To the point where it's sacrificed the chance of being appreciated for it's dramatic content.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by VisionOn /forum/post/17944203


I saw the trailer for this today on Encore (not the same as the web preview) and the only thing I kept thinking was "this is 300, the TV show."


They really overdid the slow-motion-freeze-frame action sequences and the design look and feel is exactly the same as 300. So unique is not something I would call it. A pity because the idea seems like it could be interesting, but it's going to be constantly compared to 300 because they basically copied the entire style of the movie. To the point where it's sacrificed the chance of being appreciated for it's dramatic content.

Have to agree. I'll check out the first 2 episodes, but if that's the route they take, I'll doubt I'll watch much beyond that. Maybe Raimi will be more hands-on with this show, seeing as he's now out of a job!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluto17 /forum/post/17846226


D* has a 'sneak preview' of Spartacus scheduled for January 21st on The 101, for those without Starz.

Comcast's Fancast/Xfinity service also has the first episode available for viewing, terrible video quality though.
 

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Been thinking about subscribing to Starz for this thing alone. Currently a TWC customer (pity me!) who has just negotiated a fee reduction based on a blood pact of 2-year fidelity. So, this is giving them another 10 clams a month. But mercy me, Lucy Lawless! Why oh why did they have to cast this goddess coming off her tour-de-force performance as Three on BSG...? I'd follow that woman into the deepest, darkest forests of her native New Zealand, stalkerish as that may imply.
Those bastards. Looks like I'm in.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by archiguy /forum/post/17976338


Been thinking about subscribing to Starz for this thing alone. Currently a TWC customer (pity me!) who has just negotiated a fee reduction based on a blood pact of 2-year fidelity. So, this is giving them another 10 clams a month. But mercy me, Lucy Lawless! Why oh why did they have to cast this goddess coming off her tour-de-force performance as Three on BSG...? I'd follow that woman into the deepest, darkest forests of her native New Zealand, stalkerish as that may imply. Those bastards. Looks like I'm in.

Well, if you waited a few months, you can rent the series on disc!

(Or even buy them...probably cost as much as it would to subscibe to the channel for 3 months.)


But...(and maybe I shouldn't mention this, as I don't want to encourage stalking), Lawless goes topless in this. Just remember, you still have to deal with Tapert!
 
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