Warning: This post contains a major spoiler for the very popular movie Gladiator (2000).
Russell Crowe won his Oscar for Gladiator, a movie made back in the day when it wasn’t rare to kill off your main character and never make any prequels to bring them back. Today is a very different era. Audiences (or at least Hollywood execs) love bringing back old IP. And so the Best Picture winner of the year 2000 is getting a long threatened, belated sequel, following the nephew of Joquin Phoenix’s slain baddie Commodus. Far as we know, Crowe isn’t in it, because his character died. Still, enough people have inevitably asked him about the film that he’s now publicly venting.
“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,” Crowe said at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival in the Czech Republic. “I don’t know anything about the cast, I don’t know anything about the plot.”
He also stressed that, again, Maximus, the Roman general-turned-slave-turned-warrior, ate it. He said, “in that world, I’m dead, six feet under. And that’s that.”
Of course, there’s always the possibility that Crowe could pop up in a secret cameo and this is all carefully coordinated bluster. Who knows these days!
Despite his fuming, Crowe was absolutely not crapping on the sequel, saying that “if Ridley has decided to do a second part … he will have really strong reasons.” He added, “I couldn’t think of that movie being less than absolutely spectacular.”
Crowe admitted that he felt a “certain tinge of jealousy,” because the film makes him think about “my youth.” The sequel stars young actor Paul Mescal as Lucius, said nephew, who was originally played by Spencer Treat Clark. It’s also got Denzel Washington in a role described as “badass.”
For Crowe, Gladiator was the beginning of a long partnership with Ridley Scott. Afterwards the pair teamed up for the rom-com-drama Good Year, American Gangster, Body of Lies, and Ridley’s version of Robin Hood.
You’ll have to wait till November 22, 2024 to see Gladiator 2.