The Gladiator sequel is still heading back to the Coliseum, though it may be one a little worse for wear than the glorious one we saw in Ridley Scott‘s Oscar-winning 2000 film. Scott is apparently still plugging away at that sequel, with new details emerging about the film’s potential plot and setting.
In an interview with producers Walter F. Parkes and Laurie MacDonald at HeyUGuys, the producers assured fans of the swords-and-sandals epic that the sequel is still in the works. Their assurances came with another revelation: the next Gladiator installment would take place more than 20 years after the events of the original film.
“It picks up the story 30 years later…25 years later,” Parkes said, adding, “We’re working with Ridley. That’s one we wouldn’t touch unless we felt in a way to do it was legitimate. We’re working with an amazing writer as well — Peter Craig.”
This is a sensible time to take place in the timeline of the films, as that would be roughly the amount of time between the 2000 Gladiator and its sequel. Since Russel Crowe’s Maximus died at the end of the first Gladiator, which was set in 180 AD, the sequel would ostensibly focus on a new character. According to early reports, Gladiator 2 will follow the continuing story of Lucius, the son of Lucilla (Connie Nielsen), who was played in the original film by Spencer Treat Clark. Per the 2018 report, “The youth was the nephew of Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix), the weaselly son of Roman leader Marcus Aurelius who murdered his father seized the throne and wound up in the gladiator ring with Maximus, who though mortally wounded, skewered the emperor before fading into the great beyond to reunite with his slain wife and son.”
Parkes’ description means that the story will likely pick up with Lucius as a young adult. It’s unclear whether Clarke would reprise the role as Lucius, though he did recently make a returning act in M. Night Shyamalan’s Unbreakable sequel, Glass.
Production for the yet-unnamed Gladiator 2 was originally going to “happen very quickly” after the sequel was announced to be in development last year. But Scott has been busy with his TV series, the TNT drama Raised by Wolves, which will likely take up his time before he embarks on a trip back to ancient Rome.
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