Thanks to the testimony on Spanish TV of two surviving film extras, I discovered that scenes of the 1960 Oscar-winner, starring Kirk Douglas and directed by Stanley Kubrick, were filmed around the area of the Puerta de Madrid which then marked the western town limits.
I´ve often commented that Alcalá de Henares is a pueblo masquerading as a city and now here is the proof. In 1960 it was so small and underdeveloped it could fill in for a sangre y arena location of the Roman Empire, circa 73BCE.
For me, Spartacus had it all – the fight against slavery, a tragic love story and the exposé of the true, barbaric nature of empire. I first saw it when I was very young, watching with my mother who was moved by the struggle of the main characters against injustice.
And now I live in the place where it was filmed.
Poetic justice, perhaps?