Lawless and Hannah Talk Spartacus: Gods of the Arena

"We're thrilled to be able to go back and tell a lot of the things that you hear about in Season 1," said Spartacus head writer, creator, and executive producer, Steven S. DeKnight at the TCA (Television Critics Association) Press Tour today. "Little one-liners like when Peter Mensah mentions his wife in one line, now we built an entire story around that." DeKnight was, of course, talking about the new six-episode prequel series, Spartacus: Gods of the Arena.

"I was planning in episode five of Season 2 to do a flashback episode where you saw some stuff with Batiatus," DeKnight explained. "Because we all love John Hannah, and John Hannah expressed an interest in coming back and doing a little something. So it was just a one episode, [where] part of the episode was a flashback. Once we found out what was going on with Andy [Whitfield] and we stopped production on Season 2, I thought, well, maybe how about I blow that up to a two-hour show and we air it in January while Andy's recovering." What was a two-hour idea then became a six-hour mini-series about the earlier days of the House of Batiatus and a different champion Gannicus, played by the newcomer to the cast, Australian actor Dustin Clare. [Check out IGN's recent interview with Spartacus star, Andy Whitfield, here, where he discusses his successful battle with cancer and getting ready for Season 2 of Spartacus].

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