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Denzel Washington’s ‘Bad-Ass’ Character in ‘Gladiator 2’ Revealed

The Colosseum is set to roar back to life with Ridley Scott’s upcoming Gladiator 2 and it’s already looking like a rollercoaster ride of action and drama. While we’re still eagerly awaiting any first-look imagery, trailers, or even an official plot, Ridley Scott recently sat down for an interview with Total Film magazine to share some exciting details about the sequel.

Scott spilled the beans on Golden Globe Award-winner Denzel Washington’s ‘bad-ass’ character, giving us a sneak peek into what’s in store for this highly anticipated sequel. This follow up to the beloved classic, which will star Paul Mescal, Pedro Pascal, Barry Keoghan, Connie Nielsen, and Denzel Washington, has kept much of its plot under wraps.

RELATED: ‘Gladiator 2’ Behind-the-Scenes Set Imagery Hints at an Epic Siege Battle

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What we do know is that Gladiator 2 will take place years after the events of the original movie, with Mescal taking on the role of an adult Lucius, the son of Lucilla. However, Scott’s recent update about Denzel Washington’s character provides some insight into the overall direction of the story and where things might be headed.

Scott explained, “As for Denzel’s character… There were businesses of gladiators who could indeed earn their freedom if they stayed alive. That was the deal. So we went right into that, in-depth. Where did he come from? How was he taken? He was branded with marks and registered with a brand on his chest as a slave. So that’s how he comes into the story.”

Image: DreamWorks Pictures

In the first film, we witnessed the profound journey of a gladiator striving to reclaim freedom, exemplified by Russell Crowe’s iconic turn as Maximus. Maximus, a former distinguished general, was sold into slavery and forced to become a gladiator.

The director further went on to reveal compelling perspectives about Washington’s character, highlighting his animosity towards the Romans, rooted in a tumultuous past. In Scott’s own words, “He’s a rich guy who’s still carrying a grudge.” Gladiator 2 will be the second time these two talents have joined forces, following Denzel Washington’s role in Ridley Scott’s acclaimed 2007 film, American Gangster. Scott expressed his deep respect for the Hollywood veteran, saying, “I respect Denzel Washington tremendously. I shouldn’t call Denzel a golden oldie – he’d fucking kill me – but he’s gold dust.”