Sydney Morning Herald
Former Home & Away star to conquer Hollywood as Caesar
November 30, 2012
Article by Michael Idato
Australian actor Todd Lasance is poised to become the star of a new US series based on the life of iconic Roman leader Julius Caesar.
The series is planned as a spin-off of the hit Spartacus TV franchise.
Lasance, who won widespread acclaim for his work in Cloudstreet and Underbelly Files: Tell Them Lucifer Was Here, has just finished playing Caesar in the third and final season of the Spartacus franchise, Spartacus: War of the Damned.
But the US industry website Deadline is reporting that the show’s US broadcaster, Starz, is so impressed with Lasance’s work they are considering giving Caesar his own series.
It would be the second spin-off from the Spartacus franchise; the first, Spartacus: Gods of the Arena, starred another Australian actor, former Satisfaction and McLeod’s Daughters star Dustin Clare.
A starring role in a US series would be a major breakthrough for Lasance, whose star has been ascendent since he joined the long-running hit soap Home & Away in 2007 playing Aden Jefferies.
He would also follow in a long line of Home & Away stars who have cracked Hollywood, including Chris Hemsworth (Thor, The Avengers), Melissa George (Grey’s Anatomy, In Treatment), Isla Fisher (The Wedding Crashers) and Ryan Kwanten (True Blood).
In playing Caesar – born Gaius Julius Caesar in the year 100BC – Lasance joins an eclectic group of actors who have portrayed the iconic Roman general, including Rex Harrison, who played him in the 1963 film Cleopatra, opposite Elizabeth Taylor, and John Gielgud, who played him in the 1970’s Julius Caesar.
More recently Caesar was played by Irish actor Ciaran Hinds in the critically acclaimed HBO drama Rome.
The proposed spin-off is being developed by Spartacus executive producer Robert Tapert. Tapert’s other credits include Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess, which featured his real-life wife, actress Lucy Lawless.
Lawless has also featured in Spartacus; she played Lucretia, the wife of Spartacus’ master Batiatus (John Hannah) in the first season of the show.
The third season of Spartacus also features New Zealand actress Anna Hutchison (Underbelly, Go Girls) as a powerful Roman politician’s wife and Australian actress Jenna Lind (Underbelly), playing a slave.
The series, as with the other programs in the Spartacus franchise, is filmed in New Zealand.
The third season of Spartacus launches in the US on January 25.