Entertainment

Gladiator Sequel to Russell Crowe Epic Confirmed

Prepare to be entertained again as we return to the brutal world of Ancient Rome, where politics is even more savage and deadly than arena battles. In the year 2000, Scott and his leading lady defied all expectations to bring guts and glory back to the tired trope of ‘swords and sandals’ epics to box office glory and five Oscars. Many have tried to repeat the trick and have largely failed ever since (better not to mention Kit Harington’s disastrous failure of Pompeii in 2014), but demand has always been very high for a sequel to the Maximus Decimus Meridius saga. Except, of course, he’s dead…

After finally avenging his honor and ending the tyrannical rule of Joaquin Phoenix’s Emperor Commodus, Maximus died on the sands of the arena to be reunited in the afterlife with his beloved wife and son, who had been killed at the beginning of the film.

However, Scott has always been vocal about his hopes for a sequel and has given exciting updates for the past two years before news finally broke this week confirming that production was about to begin.

While promoting House of Gucci in 2021, Scott told Empire: “I’m already having [the next] Gladiator written now. So when I’m done with Napoleon, Gladiator will be ready to go.”

According to sources at The Sun: “This has been in the making since 2018 and for a long time it looked like it would never see the light of day, but suddenly, late last year, the production team really came to life after settling on a new script that seemed to inspire them.

“A few months later, everything was working and now it’s rolling. They should be shooting in May, which means there’s a very good chance the movie will be ready sometime in 2024.”

Locations around the Moroccan city of Ouarzazate have apparently been scouted. Everything from Lawrence of Arabia to Scott’s own Kingdom of Heaven and Game of Thrones has been filmed there.

But how will the new saga bring back its Oscar-winning star, after whom the entire original film was named?

Famously, Australian singer Nic Cave pitched a “wild” script idea, where the old gods were angered by the rise of Christianity. They would reincarnate Máximo to fight against a “figure of Christ”

Cave said: “I wanted to call him the Christ Killer and in the end, you find out that the main man was his son, so he has to kill his son and the gods tricked him. He becomes this eternal warrior and ends with this 20-year-old war scene minutes that follows all the wars in history, right down to Vietnam and all that kind of stuff… It was an icy masterpiece.”

It’s much more likely that there’s some sort of flashback to Crowe’s Maximus. Current reports suggest that the new film would focus on Commodus’ young nephew, Lucius Verus, now an adult. He is the son of the Emperor’s sister Lucilla, played by Connie Nielsen, who is expected to return.

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