Ridley Scott is about to unleash hell again.
According to Deadline, the Oscar-winning director has decided that what he’s done in life really does echo for eternity, and is developing Gladiator 2.
The movie will be a direct sequel to movie behemoth Gladiator.
The 2000 critical and box office sensation won a best actor Oscar for Russell Crowe as Maximus, a Roman army general betrayed by the Emperor and forced to become a gladiator after the brutal murder of his family.
Given Maximus was killed by memorable screen villain Commodus at the end of the film, the storyline of the new incarnation is up in the air.
Reports claim the script, being written by The Town’s Peter Craig, will focus on – as one report put it – “creepy kid” Lucius, the nephew of Joaquin Phoenix’s Commodus who is all grown up and ready to get his gladiator on.
It’s not known if Spencer Treat Clark, now 31, will reprise his Lucius role. According to Indie Wire, the script will “find Lucius greatly influenced by Maximus.”
Because Gladiator won five Oscars including best picture, raked in $634 million worldwide and spawned any number of big bombastic quotes, there has been talk of a sequel in the 18 years since.
Scott, whose last swords-and-sandals effort was Exodus: Gods and Kings in 2014, raised the topic of getting the Gladiator band back together after the release of Alien: Covenant last year.
At the time, he said the script was “on the shelf” and acknowledged the tricky part will be the Maximus situation.
Musician Nick Cave took it upon himself to write his own spin on the Roman tale that would have brought back Maximus from the dead via the body of a slain Christian martyr, according to The Guardian.
“[Crowe] rang me up and asked if I wanted to write Gladiator 2,” Cave said to comedian and writer Marc Maron in 2013.
“For someone who had only written one film script, it was quite an ask. ‘Hey Russell, didn’t you die in Gladiator?’ ‘Yeah, you sort that out.’”
The news was met with mostly thumbs down reactions on Twitter.
“Why, weren’t we entertained the first time around?” said one user. “Can he … not?” asked another.
“Gladiator stands on its own as a great movie. A sequel would ruin the effect since the main character was killed,” said another.
Gladiator 2 is taking shape at Paramount but casting and a shooting start date hasn’t been announced.