The sequel to the Oscar-winning hit ‘Gladiator’ is rounding out its cast as it has added May Calamawy, Lior Raz, Derek Jacobi, Peter Mensah and Matt Lucas.
Also in talks to join the remaining cast is Fred Hechinger, who is in negotiations to play Emperor Geta, reports Deadline. Barry Keoghan was in negotiations to play the Geta character, but scheduling conflicts forced him to fall out of the project.
The newest cast members join the previously announced ensemble that includes Paul Mescal in the titular role, Denzel Washington, Pedro Pascal, Joseph Quinn and Connie Nielsen.
As per Deadline, like Nielsen, who will be reprising her role as Lucilla, Jacobi will also be one of the few legacy players returning from the original, reprising his role as Gracchus. Ridley Scott is back to direct, with David Scarpa penning the script.
The new film follows the 2000 blockbuster Gladiator, which earned more than $460 million in worldwide box office and was nominated for 12 Oscars, winning five including Best Picture. The role of Maximus, the Roman general-turned-gladiator, was a career-changer for Russell Crowe, not only delivering him the Best Actor Oscar but also launching him to the top of every leading-man list.
Once it was made clear last year that the sequel would be Scott’s next movie, every male actor in town that fit the profile began chasing the part.