John Hannah feels desperately sorry for his former Spartacus: Blood And Sand co-star Andy Whitfield because the actor was "on the verge of stardom" when he was struck down with cancer.
Whitfield played the title role in the gladiator-themed TV show, but was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma last year (10) resulting in a delay in production on the second series.
Producers turned their attentions to a prequel, Spartacus: Gods of the Arena, to allow Whitfield time to recover, but the cancer returned and he was forced to pull of out season two. He was replaced by Liam MCIntyre.
Hannah, who plays Spartacus' master in the series, admits he was devastated to hear Whitfield's bad news and hopes he will bounce back once he recovers.
He tells Scotland's Daily Record, "Andy has to focus on his recovery. I feel for him because he was on the verge of stardom. But I'm sure he'll be back."