Ridley Scott’s Initial Idea for Gladiator 2 Was Completely Bonkers, But You’d Want to See It
Thought Maximus was dead? Shame on you, in Hollywood no one is ever really dead.
Gladiator was released in 2000 and became a real hit, bringing back Ridley Scott, who had not made a truly successful movie since Thelma & Louise.
Despite the fact that the movie was released in the summer, it brought its creators a rich harvest of golden statuettes, but most importantly, it collected half a billion dollars at the worldwide box office on a budget of $100 million and an R rating.
The creators were upset by the fact that, as we all remember, the main character died in the finale – which means that it was not possible to convert this enormous success into sequels. But only at first glance.
Hollywood would not be Hollywood if, after some time, someone did not come up with interesting ideas on how to continue Gladiator’s story.
However, the original script for the Gladiator sequel was nothing like the one currently in development. In about a year, we will see a new protagonist take Maximus' place. It will be Lucius, son of Lucilla and nephew of Commodus, who will return to the screen as a mature man.
Lucius is undoubtedly a good successor to Maximus, but the original script focused on Russell Crowe's character despite his death. And that script was insane.
After dying in the arena, Maximus finds himself in the afterlife, which is a rather boring desert. He tries to find his wife and son, but instead stumbles upon a company of ancient gods led by Jupiter. The gods are not well, as the rapidly spreading new doctrine – Christianity – reduces their power more and more every day.
Jupiter invites Maximus to kill Hephaestus, who has sided with the Christians – and then he will reunite the hero with his family. Maximus goes on a quest, but when he meets Hephaestus, he learns that his wife gave up her place in eternity so that he could resurrect their son.
Maximus’ son lives in Rome and is one of the Christian preachers. The problem is that the bloodthirsty Lucius wants to exterminate all Christians.
In the end, Maximus found his son and rescued him from the Roman soldiers. After that, he gathered refugee Christians, trained them, and turned into a real army that fought and defeated Lucius' troops.
Why didn't this crazy sequel come to fruition? Probably, because it was too crazy.