Production for Starz’s series Spartacus: Blood and Sand has been halted due to the recent cancer diagnosis for series star Andy Whitfield. That’s the bad news. The good news is, from what it sounds like, they caught it early and Whitfield’s situation is described as “very treatable.”
The Hollywood Reporter posted the news, stating that Andy Whitfield, who plays the title character in Starz’s Spartacus: Blood and Sand, has been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and is set to start treatment immediately. As the second season was set to begin production in New Zealand, it seems that’s going to have to be put off until Whitfield is well enough to return to work.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with Andy," says Chris Albrecht, president and CEO of Starz. "His health, of course, is our primary concern. He has our complete support during this difficult time."
Whitfield’s diagnosis is unfortunate. What’s worse is that this makes him the second cable star recently to be diagnosed with cancer. Michael C. Hall, who stars as the title character in Showtime's Dexter is just finishing up his treatments for Hodgkins lymphoma. While Hall’s battle with cancer appears to be ending (and successfully, which is certainly good news), it sounds as though Whitfield’s is just beginning. Let’s hope his treatment is as successful as Hall’s reportedly is.
In related news, for those of you who are watching Spartacus: Blood and Sand, here’s some information that Starz released on the next couple of episodes.
Ep. 108: “Mark of the Brotherhood” – Premieres Friday, March 12th at 10pm ET/PT