After 23 years, the highly anticipated sequel to “Gladiator” is finally in production. Director Ridley Scott has assembled a production team and begun casting for major roles in the new film.
Filming is set to take place in May in the Moroccan city of Ouarzazate, known for its dramatic landscapes and popularity among filmmakers.
Details of the plot have been kept under wraps, but it was previously reported that an early idea written by rock star Nick Cave, which would have seen the return of Russell Crowe’s character Maximus through a “portal,” had been scrapped.
It is now thought that Lucius Verus, the son of Roman Empress Lucilla, may provide the link to the original story. It is also possible that Maximus may appear in flashback scenes, as long as Crowe agrees to reprise his role.
“This has been building since 2018 and for a long time it looked like it may never see the light of day,” said a source.
“But suddenly late last year the production team really sprang into life after settling on a new script which seemed to inspire them. A few months later everything was up and running and now it’s well underway.”
The source added: “They should be filming by May, which means there’s every chance the movie will be ready some time in 2024.”
“Either way, this would be a huge box office draw. It’s one of the biggest action films of its era and was a massive hit.
“People have been asking Ridley about a follow-up for years, so there’s clearly a massive appetite for it.”
The original “Gladiator” was released in 2000 and became a blockbuster hit, earning $460 million at the box office.
It also received critical acclaim, with five Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Actor, as well as Bafta and Golden Globe success.
The film featured veteran actors Derek Jacobi and Oliver Reed, with Reed’s role serving as his final film appearance.
Rumors of a “Gladiator” sequel have been circulating for the past five years, after Scott hinted at a potential script that would bring the world of the film back to the screen with Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix.
“Gladiator” fans have eagerly awaited the sequel for over two decades, and it seems their wait may finally be over.