by Aveline MacQuoid on December 19, 2020

in Extras

Gladiator Sequel Now At “More Than 50 Percent”
Chance of Being Made

Let’s face it: If you looked hard enough online at the moment, you could probably find an article or blog post on just about any movie getting either a sequel or a reboot. Usually, the rumors are built on an off-hand remark from an actor or director, put through the mill of social media, and come out the other end in a blog purporting to be based on fact.

And yet, we are firmly in the era of the Hollywood sequels and remakes, and we know there are many dozens of blockbuster movies being picked up and put through the lens of the 2020s. Some films, like Bill and Ted Face the Music, seem strangely placed for a sequel, whereas others, like Avatar, seem like they were crying out for another chapter.

Over the last couple of years, however, we started getting concrete evidence of an eyebrow-raising sequel to one of the biggest blockbusters in Hollywood history – Gladiator. {Spoiler Alert} As most people are aware, most of the main characters died by the end of the movie. As Gladiator is a kind of historical fiction, making a sequel seems about as sensible as making a sequel to Titanic.

A strange film for a sequel

The movie has, of course, remained popular 20 years after its release and Oscar success. But it has hardly had fans clamoring for a sequel. Playtech released hugely popular official Gladiator casino game, and Gladiator Jackpot for Canadians in 2020 is still arguably the most popular big-prize game at Playtech casinos. But as for the level of fandom in films like The Matrix and Star Wars, where fans demand sequels; that’s absent from the Gladiator universe.

So, what are we working on? Rumor or concrete evidence of a sequel? More of the latter it seems, as Ridley Scott seems to be very keen on the idea. In fact, the producer of Gladiator, Douglas Wick, has claimed that the sequel is “more than 50 percent” likely to be made. Wick is in talks with Ridley Scott, and they seem to be hashing out a story with Peter Craig (Top Gun Maverick, The Town). Craig is an accomplished screenwriter, so there is every reason to believe that a good script can arrive.

As for the plot, it seems we are going to be given a tale set 25-30 years after the events of the original film. The idea is that it will center on the character of Lucius, i.e. the nephew of the dastardly Emperor Commodus from the original movie. Apart from that, details are scant, and there has been no word on any casting as of yet.

Russell Crowe expresses interest of return

Indeed, it’s very unlikely that we will see any of the major members of the original cast – except for Russell Crowe. The character of Maximus is, of course, dead, but rumors have abounded that, if there is to be a Gladiator sequel, Crowe would reprise his role. Modern de-ageing techniques mean it is possible to bring Maximus back in flashbacks, but the hints are that Craig and the production team have come up with something a bit more creative. Crowe’s participation will certainly get bums on seats in the theatres.

For the moment, that’s all we know. But it seems like a sequel to Gladiator is more likely to happen now than not happen. It might seem strange and perhaps be an idea, but Ridley Scott and his team have earned the right to have our trust down the years, and they might just weave that magic again here over 20 years after the swords and sandals epic first graced cinemas.

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