I saw Andy Whitfield first in Gabriel, and despite liking him in that movie, Spartacus: Blood and Sand ended up false starting for me. Fortunately, I was convinced to try it again and am glad I did because I fell in love with the show.
And I also fell in love with Andy.
Well, no, not really. But the more I saw of him in the show, seeing him pour the depths of himself into the character, and the more I saw the behind the scenes comraderie that centred on him, and the more I heard about the show making such efforts to give him time to recover from non-Hodgkin lymphona, the more I came to realize that this was truly a great man and it was not hard to see why those who had the honour of actually working with him could love him so well.
The other day, some time after learning that he would not be returning to Spartacus, I got to thinking about him; wondering how he was doing. I guess that was one of those eerie psychic things because as it turned out, he was not doing so well.
There have been a few celebrity deaths over the years that have affected me, even though I don’t know the people personally. This is one of them. Perhaps it’s because it happened so quickly to an obviously rising star. More likely because it happened so quickly to someone who was truly undeserving of it.
And so, a week later, I find myself compelled to look up his other works and make this post as my tiny little tribute in the corner of the internet, to a man who was stolen away too quickly.
“I am going to go to sleep now as my body won’t work any more. I am like a butterfly with broken wings.” ~Andy Whitfield’s final words to his children