‘Gladiator II’ Trailer: Paul Mescal Squares Off in Ridley Scott’s Sequel

Paramount Pictures released the first “Gladiator 2” trailer on Tuesday, offering a look at Ridley Scott’s long-promised sequel to his Best Picture-winning 2000 film. Russell Crowe is out and Paul Mescal is in, playing the grown son of Connie Nielsen’s character from the first film, Lucius. In an epic journey that mirrors the one Crowe’s Maximus went on in “Gladiator,” the sequel finds Mescal crossing paths with those who wronged him in the gladiatorial arena with an A-list ensemble that includes Pedro Pascal and Denzel Washington. It’ll be in theaters in time for Thanksgiving.

David Scarpa, with whom Scott collaborated on his 2023 epic “Napoleon” and 2017 drama “All the Money in the World,” wrote the screenplay based on a story by Scarpa and Peter Craig.

A sequel to “Gladiator” has been in the offing since the first film became a runaway hit — it grossed over $460 million worldwide and won five Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Actor for Crowe. But while ideas were explored that would have followed Crowe’s character into the afterlife (spoiler alert: he dies), a follow-up never materialized. That is, until Scott came back around to the idea in the last few years and decided to tell the story of what happened to young Lucius.

Once again set in Ancient Rome, the story of “Gladiator II” takes place years after Lucius witnessed the death of the revered hero Maximus at the hands of his uncle and was sent away. With no recollection of his parentage or past, Lucius is now forced to enter the Colosseum after his home is conquered by the tyrannical Emperors who lead Rome with an iron fist. With rage in his heart and the future of the Empire at stake, Lucius must look to his past to find strength and honor to return the glory of Rome to its people, per the film’s official synopsis.

The cast also includes Joseph Quinn, Fred Hechinger, Lior Raz and Derek Jacobi. Scott produced the film alongside Douglas Wick, Lucy Fisher, Michael Pruss and David Franzoni. Executive producers are Walter Parkes, Laurie MacDonald, Raymond Kirk and Aidan Elliott.

Paramount will release “Gladiator II” only in theaters on Nov. 22, including in IMAX and large formats.

Russell Crowe in "Gladiator"

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