Russell Crowe will not be returning in any way as Maximus Tenth Meridius in the sequel to Ridley Scott’s iconic film Gladiator, and he feels a little jealous of his successor Paul Mescal.

After a creative process that has dragged on for more than two decades and has seen several versions on the table, the Gladiator sequel is taking shape, with Ridley Scott at the helm and a new leading man ready to give it his all. However, we will miss the good old Russell Crowe.

The actor brought Maximus Decimus Meridius to life in the 2000 film and won over audiences, critics and the Academy with his portrayal of the Roman general betrayed and turned gladiator.

Gladiator is still regarded as one of the greatest films in history and a worthy heir to the Golden Age of Hollywood’s Golden Globes.

But the sequel to Gladiator will not feature Russell Crowe for obvious reasons: Maximus dies of his wounds shortly after exacting revenge on Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix) in the arena of Rome’s Colosseum. In his place, Paul Mescal will bring Lucius to life in his adult stage.

Russell Crowe’s “jealousy” over Gladiator 2

In a recent interview on RTÉ Radio One, Russell Crowe confirms that he is indeed not involved in any way with the production of the new Gladiator movie.

“It’s a continuation of the narrative, but it goes way beyond the demise of Maximus, so it doesn’t involve me at all. I hear young Paul is a good guy and I wish him the best of luck. I think the story follows a young Lucius taking on the role of emperor. I think it’s a very clever idea within the world of the movie we created.”

Moreover, the actor can’t help but admit that he feels a certain pang of jealousy of his successor, who is going to live one of the best experiences he’s had in his career.

“I look back and I loved every minute of it. I love being on a period movie set. Getting into those kinds of outfits and those situations, it has a great appeal to me. I feel a slight twinge of jealousy that people have that experience that I had back in the day.”

Russell Crowe isn’t about to sit idle. The actor is currently promoting The Pope’s The Exorcist, but is involved in eight other film and TV projects.

There are still a lot of unknowns about Gladiator 2, but they will come to light as production progresses.

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