Russell Crowe talks about being “slightly uncomfortable” that Gladiator II is being made

While Maximus’ legacy will live on, the Academy Award-winning star of the original Roman epic feels uneasy about a sequel not involving him.

Last Updated on June 25, 2024

Gladiator 2, Ridley Scott, Russell Crowe

There are many examples of sequels that proceed without the original film’s star. Gladiator II will obviously not be able to feature Maximus Decimus Meridius after his arc ended in the first film. However, that will not stop attention being paid to Russell Crowe for the upcoming sequel despite the fact that he has no involvement. Last year, Crowe joked that he should be reimbursed for all the Gladiator II questions he’s fielded, “They should be f*cking paying me for the amount of questions I get asked about the f*cking film that I am not even in,” adding, “in that world, I’m dead, six feet under. And that’s that.” However, he also thinks the movie is bound to be extraordinary. “If Ridley has decided to do a second part … he will have really strong reasons…I couldn’t think of that movie being less than absolutely spectacular.” He even admitted to a “twinge of jealousy” over the film as it reminds him of his younger days.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Crowe addressed Gladiator II again in an interview with Kyle Meredith. This time, the Aussie actor talks about the unease he feels that the sequel is being made at all. Crowe explains,

I’m slightly uncomfortable with the fact they’re making another one — because, of course, I’m dead and I have no say in what gets done. But a couple of the things I’ve heard I’m like, ‘No, no, no, that’s not in the moral journey of that particular character’. But I can’t say anything, it’s not my place, I’m six foot under. So we’ll see what that is like.”

The original film from 2000 earned Crowe an Academy Award win for Best Actor, as well as the film itself nabbing a Best Picture Oscar. The long-awaited sequel stars Paul Mescal (Normal People), playing the adult Lucius. One report let us know, “Before he died, Maximus rescued Lucius and his mother from the clutches of the young man’s uncle, Commodus. The event left an impression on Lucius, who aspires to be as formidable as Maximus as he braves a harsh world.” Denzel Washington also co-stars as a supplier of weapons for the Romans.

They are also joined in Gladiator II by Fred Hechinger (The White Lotus) as Emperor Caracalla (replacing Barry Keoghan in the role, as he had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts), Joseph Quinn (Stranger Things) as Emperor Geta, and – in roles that weren’t specified when their involvement was announced – Pedro Pascal (The Last of Us), Lior Raz (The Crowded Room), Peter Mensah (Spartacus), and Matt Lucas (Wonka). Connie Nielsen will also be returning as Lucious’ mother Lucilla.

Source: THR, YouTube

About the Author

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E.J. is a News Editor at JoBlo, as well as a Video Editor, Writer, and Narrator for some of the movie retrospectives on our JoBlo Originals YouTube channel, including Reel Action, Revisited and some of the Top 10 lists. He is a graduate of the film program at Missouri Western State University with concentrations in performance, writing, editing and directing.