'Spartacus' Actor Francis 'Frankie' Mossman Dies at 33

New Zealand-born actor Francis "Frankie" Mossman, best known for his starring role on the Starz series Spartacus: Blood and Sand, has died. The 33-year-old actor died at his home in Sydney, Australia, on Saturday, Aug. 14. Although a cause of death has not been released, Mossman's family said in a statement to Daily Mail Australia the actor passed away following a quiet battle with his mental health, explaining that Mossman "had been struggling with the resurfacing of old scars and trauma from high school" amid the country's COVID lockdowns.

Mossman's passing was also confirmed by his team from agency Kathryn Rawlings & Associates, which said in a statement to E! News which read in part, "always a ray of light and a well of positivity and fun, Francis will be greatly missed. Our hearts reach out to Francis and his family during this unimaginably difficult time." In their own statement, Mossman's family remembered him as "overwhelmingly kind, enthusiastic and so very caring" and said he made "a positive impact on the lives of many who knew him."

"He had the most infectious smile along with the most brilliant sense of humor imaginable. He was forever a big kid and with that he had the warmest most generous loving heart that lit up wherever he went. Forever, he will be loved dearly and equally missed," they continued, sharing that Mossman, whom they decided as "incredibly talented and studious," had "recently started a postgraduate degree in counseling to help others who were suffering mental ill-health."

Mossman notably starred as Vitus on Starz's action series Spartacus in 2012. He is also well known for his starring role in the New Zealand soap opera Shortland Street as well as the web series The Horizon. Amid news of his passing, Mossman's fans and former co-stars have begun to pay their respects. Paul Layton, who starred alongside Mossman on The Horizon, told Daily Mail Australia Mossman "was such a beautiful person in every sense of the word."

Mossman's family asked for privacy at this time and offered a message of gratitude to "all those who loved and admired Francis for their kind words of love and support." Mossman is survived by his long-term partner Lachlan, his mother May, his father Reginald, and his younger brothers Jeremy and Laurence, who have created a GoFundMe to transport his remains to New Zealand and cover funeral costs.

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