Ready your battle cry, because it looks like 2000's Gladiator is getting a sequel, as director Ridley Scott closes in on beginning its development with Paramount. After finding success with revisiting his other hits, including Alien and Blade Runner, Scott is finally turning to his highly-acclaimed Best Picture winner about the former Roman general (Russell Crowe) who sets out to avenge his family after a corrupt emperor Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix) murders them and sends him to slavery.
According to Deadline, since Russell Crowe's Maximus didn't make it out alive at the end of Gladiator, the sequel will instead focus on the character Lucius. In the 2000 release, he was a young boy who was the son of Connie Nielson's Lucilla and nephew of Commodus. In the film, Maximus saved the boy during his quest to seek retribution for his own family. Ridley Scott is eyeing to direct the sequel, with The Town writer Peter Craig attached as well.
Considering the details given about Gladiator 2, one might expect the story to follow Lucius as our new protagonist, who would be around 20 years older and a grown man if the sequel sticks to the time gap of the films. The character was certainly impacted by the events of Gladiator, and could deal with the powerful burden of having the rights to the throne and also be at odds with a new adversary, much like Commodus was to Maximus. The sequel has been on director Ridley Scott's lips for quite some time. He hasn't been shy about his interest in continuing the saga to a film that earned 11 Oscar nominations in its heyday.
While the plot for Gladiator 2 doesn't seem to include Russell Crowe, Ridley Scott has previously talked about plans to potentially "bring back" his character by way of using a body of a dying warrior as a portal. This method seems a bit out of the realms of the Roman-set genre, but seeing Crowe in a Gladiator sequel could be a genuine crowd-pleaser if done right. One might imagine that what stinted the movie from getting other film in the past was the fact that its key characters are dead by the end of it, but now that Scott has had time to mull it over for over a decade, maybe he's developed the perfect way to continue what he started.
Until casting news for Gladiator 2 comes our way, we'll have to look at how Ridley Scott has developed his previous projects Blade Runner and Alien into ongoing franchises past his critically-acclaimed original works. 2017's Blade Runner 2049 did very well for itself as a sequel to a cult classic. The film implemented a tried-and-true leading man, Ryan Gosling, at its center while also offering up some nostalgia for the original with the inclusion of Harrison Ford, although Scott only took up the role of executive producer. On the other hand, with the Alien franchise, Scott opted for an entirely new cast of characters with Prometheus and Alien: Covenant, which makes sense since they were prequels.
Gladiator 2 is still early in development, so a release date has yet to be set, but be sure to check back with CinemaBlend for more exciting movie news updates.