“Spartacus” Ending After Three Seasons

It’s the end of the road for Spartacus. The Starz show will end its run at the completion of its upcoming third season — currently in production in New Zealand — the network said Monday.

The show nearly came to an end in 2010, when original Spartacus star Andy Whitfield was forced to quit the series because of his battle with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The actor was replaced by Liam McIntyre before ultimately losing his battle against the disease in September 2011.

Spartacus creator and executive producer Steven S. DeKnight said:

“We did not come to this decision lightly. It was an extremely difficult and emotional decision for my partners and I. Yet, in the end, the story was best served by rolling all of the remaining action and drama of Spartacus’ journey into one stunningly epic season that will be extremely satisfying for everyone who’s been along for the ride.”

Starz CEO Chris Albrecht called Spartacus “one of the most groundbreaking shows we have ever seen.”

Spartacus is a landmark series for the network which has enthralled millions of viewers and fans around the world. We are in agreement with our partners in the decision to conclude the story after War of the Damned, as we believe it is the best way to maintain the integrity of the series and secure its legacy.”

Spartacus airs in 150 countries in more than 15 languages. The final season will debut in January.