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Paul Mescal as Lucius Verus II in Gladiator II (sequel). He is shown kneeling down and rubbing his hands with sand and shirtless pulling a sword out of the ground.

‘Gladiator II’: Trailer, Release Date, Cast & More!

Prepare to be entertained! The trailer for the highly anticipated Gladiator sequel (Gladiator II) has dropped and it’s as thrilling as you can possibly imagine!

The three-minute clip shared by Paramount Pictures, introduces us to star Paul Mescal as a grown-up Lucius Verus II,  son of Lucius Verus and Lucilla, nephew of the villainous Commodus, and the former heir to the Roman Empire.



Who is cast in Gladiator II?

Alongside Paul Mescal, the cast of Gladiator II features a group of stellar actors. Pedro Pascal plays Marcus Acacius, a Roman general who trained under Maximus. Denzel Washington plays Macrinus, an arms dealer and power broker who oversees a stable of gladiators. Connie Nielsen who starred as Lucilla in the original film, is reprising her role and is the mother of Lucius Verus, as is Derek Jacobi who played Senator Gracchus in the first film, a member of the Roman Senate who opposes the court’s corruption.


Pedro Pascal in a still from Gladiator II dressed as a Roman emperor with dirt on his face.

Paramount Pictures


Original stars Russell Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix are not returning for the film – which makes total sense given their characters’ endings! However going by the trailer, we do see Russell as Maximus in a flashback explaining Lucius’ backstory.



What is the plot of Gladiator II?

The film picks up over 20 years after the events of the original film. It follows the story of Lucius Verus, who watched Maximus in action as a child, and is now an adult. He has become a gladiator himself – a furious and strategic fighter who faces baboons and an angry rhinoceros in the ring, with a mission to get his revenge against the Roman Empire. As it so happens, Macrinus, a shady character (Denzel Washington), is also on a mission to see the empire fall.

Denzel Washington ins a still from Gladiator II, dressed in gold and royal blue. He looks like a wealthy man.

Paramount Pictures


Filming began in June 2023, mostly taking place in Morocco but also in the UK and Malta.

In the original 2000 film, Maximus (played by Russell Crowe) is a Roman General who is sentenced to be a slave by Commodus, the son of Caesar Marcus Aurelius (played by Joaquin Phoenix). His family is also sentenced to death under Commodus’ orders. Of course, this only fuels a fire in Maximus and sees him rise to the top of the gladiators. All the while, he is being watched and admired by a young Lucius Verus.

The movie won five Academy Awards at the time including the prestigious Best Picture.


Who is Making Gladiator II?

Acclaimed director Ridley Scott is resuming his role for the film’s sequel, with David Scarpa penning the screenplay. The pair previously worked together on All the Money in the World and Napoleon. 


When will Gladiator II be released?

Gladiator II opens in theatres in Australia on November 14 and globally from November 22.


(Feature Image Credit: courtesy Paramount Pictures)


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Nehal is an award-winning news presenter, author of "A Kids Book About Kindness Online" and founder of CelebrityKind. She has dedicated her career to creating connected and healthy spaces in the media. When she's not writing, you'll find Nehal hanging with family, dancing to Beyoncé, interpreting Taylor Swift lyrics or watching old eps of Oprah.