It seems that a blossoming new friendship between Hollywood A-listers Chris Hemsworth and Russell Crowe could result in a sequel to director Ridley Scott’s Oscar-winning historical epic, Gladiator. The pair, who have apparently gotten close while filming upcoming Marvel sequel Thor: Love and Thunder, are rumored to be in talks to co-produce Gladiator 2, with the idea being that Hemsworth will play Maximus’ son.
“Russell thinks he could be the only man to credibly play his son in a Gladiator sequel,” explains the source. The same insider claims that both Crowe and Hemsworth are “carefully considering the concept” for the long-awaited Gladiator sequel and have “spent hours musing over script ideas.” Interestingly, the source has also claimed that it was actually Chris Hemsworth’s wife, actress Elsa Pataky, who planted the idea of the Gladiator sequel, saying that “She’s often joked they could easily pass off as father and son.”
The first Gladiator centers on Russell Crowe as Roman general Maximus Decimus Meridius, who is betrayed when Commodus, the ambitious son of Emperor Marcus Aurelius, murders his father and seizes the throne. Reduced to slavery, Maximus becomes a gladiator and rises through the ranks of the arena to avenge the murders of his family and his emperor. Gladiator 2 has been speculated over for years, and with the first movie earning over $400 million worldwide, as well as being nominated for 11 Oscars, winning for Best Picture and Best Actor, it’s no wonder that the sequel continues to press.
Of course, the idea of Chris Hemsworth picking up the mantle as Crowe AKA Maximus’ son makes sense in theory, but problems quickly start to arise thanks to the fact that Maximus’ only known son is, well, very dead. Murdered along with his mother as punishment for Maximus’ rebellious attitude towards Commodus’ rule, one cannot help but wonder how exactly Gladiator 2 would follow the adventures of the son…unless the movie takes a turn towards the ridiculous, introducing a son we didn’t know about, or perhaps even the more fantastical, resurrecting him from the grave his father dug in the first movie.
The latter idea would not be without precedent, as director Ridley Scott’s initial plan for Gladiator 2 was vastly different to the first movie, with the idea to somehow resurrect Russell Crowe’s intrepid commander-turned-gladiator Maximus Decimus Meridius. This would have included a move towards the fantasy genre and would have involved Maximus fighting his way through various periods of history. While Crowe is likely too old now for any of this, could Hemsworth and Crowe have adjusted the basics of this idea to apply to the son instead?
Before any of that, Hemsworth has another warrior role to play first, that of Marvel’s Thor in upcoming sequel Thor: Love and Thunder. Directed by Taika Waititi, Thor: Love and Thunder will be spinning a lot of plates as it includes Jane Foster becoming The Might Thor, the return of several other MCU characters such as Chris Pratt’s Star-Lord and the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy, introduces Christian Bale as the villainous Gorr the God Butcher, and features Russell Crowe in a cameo appearance.
Thor: Love and Thunder is scheduled to be released in the United States on May 6, 2022, as part of Phase Four of the MCU. This comes to us from New Idea.