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07th Jan 2023

Paul Mescal set for huge role in highly-anticipated Gladiator sequel

Patrick McCarry

The actor has been on a steady rise but this movie could could put him over the top

Paul Mescal has been linked with taking on a major role in the planned, and highly-anticipated, sequel to Gladiator.

The ‘Normal People’ and ‘Aftersun’ star is reportedly being lined up for one of the main parts in a follow-up to the Oscar-winning movie from 2000.

Gladiator, was nominated for 11 Oscars, and won five, including Best Picture and a Best Actor award for Russell Crowe, who played Maximus Decimus Meridius, a former general that is forced into becoming a gladiator after surviving an attempt on his life.

The major villain of the first Gladiator movie was Commodus, played by Joaquin Phoenix, who plumbs horrible depths to become Emperor of Rome.

The Hollywood Reporter has stated that Mescal in negotiations with producers for the film’s lead role.

On the plot, they state:

‘According to previous reports, the sequel’s story will centre on Lucius, the son of Lucilla, played by Connie Nielsen, and the nephew of Phoenix’s Commodus.’

Russell Crowe faces off against a legendary fighter, and a tiger, in a scene from the film ‘Gladiator’. (Photo by Universal/Getty Images)

Mescal set to star as Lucius

In the original film, Emperor Commodus keeps extremely close tabs on Lucius, his nephew, as he tries to manoeuvre himself into a position of absolute power.

Lucius is a keen follower of the best gladiators and quickly gets behind Maximus as he wins over the Roman public.

Should the negotiations go well, this will be the first time Mescal would be slated to have a main role in a major studio production.

Deadline has reported that Mescal has been picked out for the lead role ahead of these actors:

  • Timothée Chalamet (star of Dune and Little Women)
  • Austin Butler (star of Elvis)
  • Richard Madden (played Robb in Game of Thrones)
  • Miles Teller (star of Top Gun:Maverick)

Screenwriter David Scarpa, who has worked closely with director Ridley Scott in the past, is writing the Gladiator sequel. Scott will also serve as one of the producers.

There has long been talk of a Gladiator 2 project getting off the ground. There was even a Gladiator sequel treatment and script written by musician Nick Cave.

It saw Russell Crowe reprise his role as Maximus as he awoke in the afterlife and had to battle all manner of ghouls and demons to try reach his beloved family, in Elysium.

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