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Spartacus is a 1960 American epic historical drama film directed by Stanley Kubrick, written by Dalton Trumbo, and based on the 1951 novel of the same title by Howard Fast. It is inspired by the life story of Spartacus, the leader of a slave revolt in antiquity, and the events of the Third Servile War. It stars Kirk Douglas in the title role, Laurence Olivier as Roman general and politician Marcus Licinius Crassus, Peter Ustinov as slave trader Lentulus Batiatus, John Gavin as Julius Caesar, Jean Simmons as Varinia, Charles Laughton as Sempronius Gracchus, and Tony Curtis as Antoninus.
|Directed by||Stanley Kubrick|
|Screenplay by||Dalton Trumbo|
by Howard Fast
|Produced by||Edward Lewis|
|Edited by||Robert Lawrence|
|Music by||Alex North|
|Distributed by||Universal International|
|Box office||$17 million (initial release)|
Douglas, whose company Bryna Productions was producing the film, removed original director Anthony Mann after the first week of shooting. Kubrick, with whom Douglas had made Paths of Glory (1957), was brought on board to take over direction. It was the only film directed by Kubrick where he did not have complete artistic control. Screenwriter Dalton Trumbo was blacklisted at the time as one of the Hollywood Ten. Douglas publicly announced that Trumbo was the screenwriter of Spartacus, and President John F. Kennedy crossed American Legion picket lines to view the film, helping to end blacklisting; Howard Fast's book had also been blacklisted and he had to self-publish the original edition.
The film won four Academy Awards (Best Supporting Actor for Ustinov, Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction and Best Costume Design), and became the biggest moneymaker in Universal Studios' history, until it was surpassed by Airport (1970).