Russell Crowe has not been asked to appear in Gladiator 2, the sequel to the actor's smash hit released in 2000.
Russell Crowe recently dropped the bombshell that he isn’t involved in Gladiator 2. IndieWire reports that the actor has not been contacted by Ridley Scott or anyone in his crew in regard to the sequel. “I’m sure at some point in time they’ll want to ask me about something, but they haven’t brought anything up in a while,” said Crowe when asked about it.
While the original film ended with his character Maximus dying, fans were still hoping Ridley Scott might find a way to work Russell Crowe into Gladiator 2. Sadly that doesn’t seem to be the case. The movie will instead focus on an older version of Lucius, played by Paul Mescal.
Gladiator 2 is set to take place 20 years after the original film and is expected to follow Lucius, the nephew of Joaquin Pheonix‘s Commodus, as he rules over Rome. Though Russell Crowe won’t be in Gladiator 2, the actor has given the film his blessing.
Crowe called Mescal a “good dude” and wished him luck with the film. Russell also called the movie’s premise a “smart idea” in relation to the world he helped create in the first Gladiator.
Ridley Scott first announced that he would be directing and producing a sequel to Gladiator in 2018. In the following years, a lot of discussions have been had over what, if any, role Russell Crowe would play in the production, with many hoping for some sort of Maximus flashback in Gladiator 2. That hope hasn’t been completely dashed.
With Marvel and DC tacking last-minute cameos onto their films left and right, it’s easy to imagine Ridley Scott doing the same thing with the Gladiator sequel. Scott could even employ digital de-aging to make Russell Crowe look like he did 23 years ago for a Gladiator 2 flashback or dream sequence.
Of course, even if Scott doesn’t ask Russell Crowe to film a scene for Gladiator 2, the New Zealand actor has plenty of other projects to keep him busy. Crow has no less than nine upcoming roles listed on his IMDb page, including The Pope’s Exorcist and Kraven the Hunter, a film set in Sony’s Spider-Man universe.
Speaking of Spider-Man, Crowe was recently introduced into the MCU through Thor: Love and Thunder as Marvel‘s version of Zeus. The character’s involvement in Thor 4‘s after-credit scene makes it likely that we’ll be seeing him again in Thor 5 or another one of Disney’s Marvel movies.
As great as it would be to see Russell Crowe come back for Gladiator 2, fans of the original movie will be satisfied just as long as the sequel is a worthy follow-up. The original Gladiator was a box office smash in 2000, inspiring a ton of clones in the sword-and-sandal genre. It’s going to be hard for Gladiator 2 to live up to the original.
Luckily the sequel was written by Ridley Scott collaborator David Scarpa and will feature work by original costume designer Janty Yates and production designer Arthur Max. If anyone is capable of making a worthy sequel to Gladiator, it’s the team from the original film.
Even if Russell Crowe doesn’t show up in Gladiator 2, fans can rest assured they will still be entertained.