HBO's epic drama series ROME has begun production on its ten-episode second season, it was announced today by Carolyn Strauss, president, HBO Entertainment. Filming of the new episodes will continue at Rome's Cinecittą Studios through next October, with debut set for 2007.
"This exciting series offers a spectacle unlike anything else on TV," noted Strauss. "The new episodes of ROME will go deeper into the intriguing characters and provocative storylines that made the first season a hit with critics and subscribers."
Chronicling the fall of a republic and the rise of an empire, the first season of ROME wrapped last December. TV Guide hailed it as a "feast for the eyes" and a "ripping good story," as well as a "shamelessly enjoyable historical romp," while the Washington Post described the series as "ravishing and wickedly shocking," and "a feast for the senses that includes generous portions of food for thought." In addition, ROME received two Golden Globe nominations: Best Television Series - Drama and Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series - Drama (Polly Walker).
The new season of ROME will continue the story following the death of Gaius Julius Caesar. Returning actors include Kevin McKidd ("Kingdom of Heaven") as Lucius Vorenus, Ray Stevenson ("King Arthur") as Titus Pullo, Polly Walker ("Patriot Games") as Atia of the Julii, James Purefoy ("Vanity Fair") as Mark Antony, Tobias Menzies ("Foyle's War") as Marcus Junius Brutus, Lindsay Duncan ("Under the Tuscan Sun") as Servilia of the Junii, and Kerry Condon ("Angela's Ashes") as Octavia of the Julii.
Among the returning directors are Timothy Van Patten and Allen Coulter. New members of the creative team include John Melfi (HBO's "Sex and the City") as executive producer and Anthony Pratt (HBO's "Band of Brothers") as production designer.
ROME is a co-production of HBO and the BBC; co-creators, John Milius and William J. Macdonald and Bruno Heller; executive producers, Bruno Heller, William J. Macdonald, John Milius, Anne Thomopoulos and John Melfi; co-executive producers, Jim Dyer, Eugene Kelly and Marco Valerio Pugini; consulting producer, Michael Apted; production designer, Anthony Pratt; costume designer, April Ferry; casting, Nina Gold, Nina Gold & Associates.