After the long and difficult process of trying to figure out who should replace Andy Whitfield on the hit Starz original series, Spartacus: Blood and Sand, the actor who will step into the title role has officially been chosen, and his name is Liam McIntyre.
Whitfield was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma after the resoundingly popular first season, and their sophomore run was put on hold. At a time it seemed Whitfield was about to make a full recovery, but sadly he had a setback and the show was delayed again, forcing Starz to consider either recasting Whitfield’s role or possibly even canceling the show all together.
Many of you commented on the looming decision and ultimately confirmed choice to recast, and most, while not at all that comfortable with replacing Whitfield, seemed to want the show to go on one way or another.
With the news that McIntyre has been chosen, I think all of you fans can breathe a subtle sigh of relief. Will this gentleman be able to bring the same level of performance that Andy Whitfield did? We won’t know for sure until we seem him in action. But what we do know, as you can see by the image above and a few other pictures of the actor, is that he doesn’t look all that different from Whitfield. There’s going to be an adjustment period for we the fans of the show, that goes without saying, but the closer he looks to Whitfield’s Spartacus, the easier it will be to move forward after this unfortunate situation.
McIntyre in an Australian actor who has yet to do anything very well-known, apart from an appearance on the WWII series, The Pacific. This of course is about to change very quickly. He has a few other credits to his name, however, and a simple search will lead you to some of his work if you’d like to see him in action.
Speaking of the big announcement, Starz President and CEO Chirs Albrecht had this to say:
Since no one can really replace Andy, we realized that we should instead find an actor who can truly lead “˜Spartacus’ forward.
It was important to us to have Andy endorse the idea of recasting this part, which he did in the same heroic manner that he’s dealt with his whole ordeal. And that, coupled with our fortune in finding a young actor with the gladiator credentials and the acting ability of Liam, makes it easier for us to keep this hit franchise going.
Now, until season 2 finally arrives, don’t forget that it was decided a while back to make a prequel mini-season called Spartacus: Gods of the Arena. The six-episode prequel will debut this Friday at 10pm EST on Starz — don’t miss it!
What do you guys think of the new Spartacus based on the little we have to go on?
Love the show. Feel bad about Andy Whitfield though. I hope he gets better soon.
Comment by Frank — January 18, 2011 @ 12:46 am
All of this has been handled with a great deal of respect. I am certainly looking forward to the result.
Comment by Wes — January 18, 2011 @ 10:14 am
I am loyal to Spartacus – I loved Season 1 and the prequel is entertaining… But part or I should say a very large part of my loyalty was due to Andy winning me over for his raw portrayal of the lead role. I feel as bad as I did when we lost Heath Ledger after his portrayal of the Joker or Brandon Lee’s portrayl of The Crow. I know Whitfield is fighting Cancer and I wish him the best… I cannot in confidence say I will watch Season 2’s “Spartacus:Vengeance” with the same enthusiasm as I originally had… Liam or whoever this Aussie is has big shoes to fill… Andy, you are Spartacus, NO ONE CAN REPLACE YOU!
Comment by Don — February 3, 2011 @ 2:08 am
Andy is Spartacus. He can not be replaced. Starz is making a HUGE mistake by recasting him. Even though they have Andy’s blessing I still would not recast him. I would go in other directions until Andy can make a full recovery and if he can’t then there should be no Spartacus. Keep the show but do not recast. Do you think they could recast Jack Bauer?
Comment by Lex — February 4, 2011 @ 3:33 am
Very sad news. I don’t think Andy can be replaced, and it will be dificult to accept. I also didn’t think the Prequel would be good without Andy, and I was surprised at how great that turned out. I will give Sparatcus 2.0 a chance. All of the performances have been great thus far (a credit to the casting department), but the writing is what drives the story for me, and as long as Steven S. DeKnight is onboard, count me in.
Comment by Maximumdvd — March 15, 2011 @ 8:42 am
I will watch…but I am so with Lex on this one. Andy is Spartacus…this Vengeance will be a different show entirely…possibly good, but I won’t be watching it as a continuation. I don’t think my head can wrap itself around that. I am happy the other brilliant actors still have jobs. I am so sad for Whitfield on a personal fan level, as a human being to another, but also sad for fans because it just won’t be the same.
Comment by Trish — April 15, 2011 @ 5:37 pm
I LOVE Andy, and I can’t say as much as I mean this.Â BEAT THAT CANCER ANDY.Â I’m good at kicking ass, but I want you back buddy.Â I want youÂ back big time.Â Just beat the cancer and come back buddy.Â You are the SHIT!@4128fdb5965eda050df5218a379f908f:disqusÂ Come back Andy.Â I will fuck the Gods in their faces if they don’t bring you back, and I am straight as fuck.Â Let’s face it, I am kinda cute, not with your sort of facial characteristics.Â ANDY,Â I love you.Â FIGHT THAT cancer and come back.Â No one can do it like you can.Â You ARE Spartacus.
Comment by Mattcleere — June 11, 2011 @ 10:59 am
sorry to say but the new actor sucks!!
Comment by he sucks — February 11, 2013 @ 10:57 pm