Monday, September 12, 2011
Very Sad Andy Whitfield Dead at 39
He was Spartacus.
He played the lead role in Spartacus: Blood and Sand.
He was 39.
Andy Whitfield — who was born in Wales and moved to Australia in 1999 — was a virtual unknown when he was cast as the legendary Thracian slave in "Spartacus," a role made famous by Kirk Douglas in the 1960 Stanley Kubrick film.
The series proved a breakout hit for the Starz network and made waves with its graphic violence and sexuality.
Whitfield appeared in all 13 episodes of the first season that aired in 2010, and was preparing to shoot the second when he was diagnosed with cancer.
While waiting for Whitfield's treatment and expected recovery, the network produced a six-part prequel, "Spartacus: Gods of the Arena," that aired earlier this year with only a brief voiceover from the actor.
But in January after Whitfield's condition grew worse, the network announced that another Australian actor, Liam McIntyre, would take over the role.
"We are deeply saddened by the loss of our dear friend and colleague, Andy Whitfield," Starz President and CEO Chris Albrecht said in a statement Sunday night. "We were fortunate to have worked with Andy in 'Spartacus' and came to know that the man who played a champion on-screen was also a champion in his own life."