Since first being discussed in rumors from 2017, Gladiator 2 finally has a promising production update, leading fans to believe the anticipated sequel is finally on the horizon.
The sequel to Ridley Scott's 2000 roman epic has been in development for years at this point, with an official announcement of the project happening in late 2018.
Scott will reprise his role as the film's director, with Top Gun: Maverick scribe Peter Craig helping to pen the script. No official release timing on the project has been made public, but it has been revealed that the Gladiator follow-up will take place "25 years" after the first film.
Now, after relative silence on the Gladiator 2 front, the sequel is reportedly moving onto the next step on its journey to the big screen.
Gladiator 2 Casting News
A new report revealed Ridley Scott's Gladiator 2 is currently in the midst of putting together its cast.
As a part of his latest newsletter for Puck News, Matthew Belloni noted that he has heard from agency sources that Scott and co. are right now looking for key actors for the upcoming sequel, with no further details given.
It has been mentioned that the film is looking to begin production in earnest in May 2023, so the creative team has about five months to put together their ensemble.
Back in December, World of Reel reported on Gladiator 2 as well, pointing to Ridley Scott scouting locations for his big-screen blockbuster. With the sequel looking at a May production start date, it would put filming right around the theatrical debut of Scott's latest film, Napoleon.
The sequel is set to focus on Lucius, the nephew of Joaquin Phoenix's Gladiator villain, Commodus. Fans may remember Lucius as the child Maximus (played by Russell Crowe) saved from his dastardly uncle in the original film.
As it stands Lucius' mother, Lucilla, will be played yet again by Connie Nielsen, with the only confirmed casting to be Djimon Hounsou as former slave, Juba.
When Will Gladiator 2 Be Released?
It will be exciting for Gladiator fans to finally see that the sequel is getting updates such as these, but it will also have many wondering when audiences can expect to see the Ridley Scott-directed epic.
While some may have questioned whether the film was stuck in development hell, that does not seem to be the case with casting actively moving forward. This is a good sign that the movie will see the light of day sooner rather than later.
With an expected start to filming happening this May, fans should expect the Gladiator 2 machine to really start rolling as 2023 goes on.
As for when it will finally hit the big screen, nothing official has been released yet, but it would make sense for a potential release date to fall sometime late next year (2024) or in the first half of 2025.
The first Gladiator released on May 1, 2000, kicking off that year's blockbuster season; however, a Christmas release might make the most sense for the upcoming sequel.
Scott will surely want this film to be in the awards conversation the way the first film was, and that Christmas timeslot (right around when Avatar 2 was released last year) is the perfect spot for a mega-spectacle Oscar contender.
The only issue with that Holiday 2024 window is James Cameron has his next Pandoran adventures in Avatar 3 coming out right around that time as well.
If a director were to pit his blockbuster against one of Cameron's, Ridley Scott would be the person to do it.