Though already reported about, it was until Friday at the Television Critics Association press tour where Starz president Chris Albrecht confirmed the network was going forward with a second full season of “Spartacus” despite the departure of former lead star Andy Whitfield says TV Squad.
Whitfield had to drop out of the ancient Roman gladiator-themed cable series in order to receive further treatment for non-Hodgkin lymphoma which it was previously announced that he had managed to recover from.
A new lead actor for the drama will be announced in the next few weeks, production will kick off in New Zealand in April, and the season itself will go to air in very early 2012. In November it was reported that Canadian actor Stephen Amell, British actor Aiden Turner and Australian actor Liam McIntyre were the three major contenders for the role.
Four scripts for the second season are complete and will have entirely new settings with many new characters as it chronicles Spartacus and his band of rebel slaves. With more location work, the show is set to score a bigger budget.
“Spartacus: Gods of the Arena”, a six-episode prequel set five years before events in the first season, begins airing on the network from Friday January 21st.