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Gladiator sequel might just have found its villain
Photo: © ANP

Gladiator sequel might just have found its villain

Gladiator sequel might just have found its villain
Photo: © ANP

Barry Keoghan has been cast in a vital role in the Gladiator sequel.

Gladiator, directed by Sir Ridley Scott, was released in 2000 and is recognised as one of the best movies of that decade as well as a hit commercially. It won five Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Actor for Russell Crowe.

It told the story of Maximus Decimus Meridius, a Roman general betrayed by Emperor Commodus following the death of previous Emperor, Marcus Aurelius. Maximus survives an assassination attempt and is eventually sold into slavery before becoming a Gladiator inside the Roman colosseum.

Talk of a sequel has been around for many years, but it was finally confirmed late last year, with Paul Mescal playing the lead role of Lucius, who we saw as a child in the first movie.

Now, Keoghan has been cast as a character named Emperor Gata, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

It is certainly possible that the Irishman will play the primary villain in the film.

Keoghan has hit superstardom over the last few years due to performances in projects like The Eternals, Killing of a Sacred Deer, The Batman and, of course, The Banshees of Inisherin, which earned him an Academy Award nomination.

Scott is currently working on a movie about Napoleon, which actually stars Gladiator actor Joaquin Phoenix. After production ends on that, he will be ready to dive into Gladiator 2.

What will the Gladiator sequel be about?

The have been several scripts drafted for the Gladiator sequel over the years, including an outrageous one developed by Nick Cave that would have seen Maximus resurrected as an immortal warrior who fights in historical events like World War II and the Vietnam War.

In his script, Maximus would have been tasked with assassinating Jesus Christ at the behest of the Roman Empire.

Cave's script was rejected.

In reality, the belief is that Gladiator 2 will focus on the character of Lucius from the first movie. The son of Lucilla and nephew of Commodus, he struck a bond with Maximus, who may or may not be his father.

It is unclear at this point whether Crowe will appear as Maximus following his death at the end of Gladiator, but it is possible he could feature in flashbacks as the story focuses on Lucius' conception.

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