Gladiator 2 confirms official title as first footage is debuted

paul mescal arriving at the olivier awards 2023 in london
Gladiator 2 confirms official titleStuart C. Wilson - Getty Images

Gladiator 2 is arriving in cinemas later this year, and it will see Paul Mescal fight a rhino in the Colosseum.

The first footage from the eagerly-awaited sequel was shown today (April 11) during Paramount's CinemaCon panel where its official title – Gladiator II – was also confirmed.

Sadly, the footage has not been released online, but we know that it featured Mescal's character, said to be Lucius – the grown-up son of Connie Nielsen's Lucilla from the first movie – talking about the events of that classic movie.

"I remember that day. I never forgot it. That a slave could take revenge against an emperor. That a slave could get justice in the arena," he says (via The Hollywood Reporter).

connie nielsen russell crowe in gladiator

The first footage also confirmed Joseph Quinn's villainous role, teased a naval battle in the Colosseum and also revealed that Pedro Pascal is playing a military figure who's forced to become a gladiator.

First spoken about shortly after the release of Gladiator in 2000, it has taken 24 years for Ridley Scott to return to this world.

Connie Neilsen is reprising her role for the sequel, but it's not expected that anybody else will return from the first movie, including Djimon Hounsou.

In their place, we have an impressive cast that includes Denzel Washington, Pedro Pascal, Joseph Quinn, Fred Hechinger (taking over from Barry Keoghan, who had to drop out of the sequel) and Derek Jacobi.

paul mescal arriving at the olivier awards 2023 in london
Stuart C. Wilson - Getty Images

Last year, Scott revealed that it was watching Normal People that led to Mescal's casting. "I was thinking, 'Who the hell is this Paul Mescal?' And then I watched the whole series," he recalled.

"And then, suddenly, Gladiator 2 came up, because the script was working pretty well. And I kept thinking about Paul. And that was it."

Gladiator II is released in cinemas on November 22.

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