By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist July 20, 2011 at 5:08AM
Already the subject of Stanley Kubrick's 1960 film, the 2004 USA Network made-for-TV movie starring Goran Višnjić and the backdrop for Starz bloody and sexed up "Spartacus: Blood and Sand" and "Spartacus: Gods Of The Arena" it seems that GK Films feel that tale of Spartacus still needs to be told.
The studio has picked up a pitch written by Michael B. Gordon of "300" fame and not much else (his only credit since is a "story by" tag for "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra") that promises to make your history teacher happy. Instead of spinning the story of the slave leader into a new adventure, this project promises to stick closer to history. The project will focus on the years between 73 and 71 BC when Spartacus and his army of 30,000 gladiators and 40,000 freed slaves waged a bloody (but ultimately failed) rebellious war against the Romans, led by commander Marcus Licinius Crassus. The project is still in early stages, but let's hope that Gordon keeps the terse, loud dialogue yelling stuff to a minium.
We have nothing against sword and sandal flicks, but with deluge of these kinds of projects hitting screens in the next little while -- albeit a bit more fantastically with "Immortals, " "Wrath Of The Titans" and "300: Battle Of Artemisia" -- we hope the approach brings something new and perhaps more mature to the table. Until then, Kubrick's film will tide us over. [Variety]