Sins of Rome (1953)


Sins of Rome (Italian: Spartaco) is a 1953 historical drama film directed by Riccardo Freda and loosely based on the life story of Spartacus.

It is also known as Spartaco (original Italian title), Sins of Rome (US title), Spartacus (English title), Spartacus the Gladiator (UK title), and Sins of Rome, Story of Spartacus (UK title).


74 B.C. Somewhere in the Roman Empire, Spartacus, a young officer, is condemned to be a slave because he hit a superior. Brought back to Roma in a gladiators’ school, he escapes and stirs up all the slaves in a revolt against the Roman Empire.


  • Massimo Girotti as Spartacus.
  • Ludmilla Tchérina as Amitis.
  • Gianna Maria Canale as Sabina.
  • Yves Vincent as Ocnomas.
  • Carlo Ninchi as Marcus Licinius Crassus.
  • Carlo Giustini as Artorige.
  • Teresa Franchini as Spartacus’s Mother.
  • Vittorio Sanipoli as Marcus Virilius Rufus.
  • Umberto Silvestri as Lentulus.
  • Renato Baldini as Gladiator.
  • Nerio Bernardi.
  • Cesare Bettarini.


  • The rights of film’s negatives and copies were bought by the producers of Stanley Kubrick’s 1960 film Spartacus, as to prevent eventual new releases of the film that could have damaged the commercial outcome of Kubrik’s film; this resulted in Sins of Rome’s withdrawal from market for about thirty years.

Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s): Riccardo Freda.
  • Producer(s): Carlo Caiano.
  • Writer(s): Jean Ferry (adaptation), Maria Bory (adaptation and original story), Gino Visentini (adaptation), Colette Lucot … (dialogue) (french version), and Riccardo Freda … (screenplay) (uncredited).
  • Music: Renzo Rossellini.
  • Cinematography: Gabor Pogany and Mario Bava.
  • Editor(s): Mario Serandrei.
  • Production: Consorzio Spartacus.
  • Distributor(s): Associati Produttori Indipendenti Film (API) (1953) (Italy) (theatrical), Comptoir Français du Film (CFF) (1953) (France) (theatrical), Independent Film Distributors (IFD) (1953) (UK) (theatrical) (English dubbed), Interna Filmverleih (1953) (West Germany) (theatrical), Sonoro Filme (1953) (Portugal) (theatrical), Filmtrust (1954) (Netherlands) (theatrical), Iris Film (1954) (Austria) (theatrical), RKO Radio Pictures (1954) (USA) (theatrical) (English dubbed), Kino-Filmi (1955) (Finland) (theatrical), Something Weird Video (SWV) (1998) (USA) (video) (English dubbed) (UK main titles), Sinister Cinema (USA) (VHS) (as ‘Sins of Rome’), and VIP (1979) (France) (VHS) (dubbed version).
  • Release Date: 28 January 1953 (Italy), 30 July 1953 (West Germany), August 1953 (UK), 14 August 1953 (France), and June 1954 (US).
  • Running Time: 105 minutes.
  • Rating: U.
  • Country: Italy and France.
  • Language: English, Italian, and French.

Video Link


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