‘Gladiator 2’ Trailer: Paul Mescal Faces Off Against Pedro Pascal and Denzel Washington in Ridley Scott’s Action-Packed Sequel

Gladiator 2

It’s time to step back into the ring as Paramount Pictures has debuted the official trailer for Ridley Scott’s “Gladiator 2,” starring Paul Mescal as a grown-up Lucius. The long-anticipated sequel is set for release on Nov. 22.

Lucius is the son of Lucilla (Connie Nielsen) and the nephew of Commodus, the original film’s antagonist played by Joaquin Phoenix. He was portrayed as a child by Spencer Treat Clark in the original “Gladiator” movie.

The sequel picks up years later with Lucius now living in the northern African region of Numidia, where he was sent by his mother as a child as it was just outside the reach of the Roman Empire. Events bring Lucius back to Rome as a gladiator, where he makes new enemies and reunites with his mother.

The supporting cast features Pedro Pascal as Marcus Acacius, a Roman general who trained under the command of Maximus Decimus Meridius (Russell Crowe from “Gladiator”), Denzel Washington as Macrinus, a wealthy powerbroker in Rome who keeps a stable of gladiators for sport, and Joseph Quinn and Fred Hechinger as the twin emperors of Rome.

Ridley Scott recently told Vanity Fair that he became a fan of Mescal’s after watching the actor’s breakthrough performance in “Normal People.” The two men only spoke for about a half hour when Scott decided that Mescal was his “Gladiator 2” lead. The actor bulked up so much for the film that co-star Pascal told the publication it was quite challenging having to face off against him in the arena. Pascal even gave Mescal a nickname on set: “Brick Wall Paul.”

“He got so strong. I would rather be thrown from a building than have to fight him again,” Pascal added. “To go up against somebody that fit and that talented and that much younger…It’s brutal, man.”

In the original “Gladiator,” Russell Crowe starred as Maximus, a Roman general who is betrayed by Commodus and reduced to slavery and to fighting as a gladiator as he seeks to avenge his family. Maximus also saves the lives of Lucius and Lucilla. The film was a box office success and took of several Oscars, including best picture and best actor. Hans Zimmer was nominated for best original score and has returned to score the sequel.

Watch the trailer below.

From Variety US