Russell Crowe Confirms He's Not Part Of 'Gladiator 2': "It Doesn't Really Involve Me At All"

Russell Crowe will be in the crowd and not the gladiatorial pit this time around for “Gladiator 2.” IndieWire reports that the actor confirmed on RTÉ Radio One’s “The Ryan Turbidy Show” that he’s not part of Ridley Scott‘s upcoming sequel, and that nobody on the movie’s creative team has “brought anything up” to Crowe “in a while.” No surprise there, as “Gladiator 2” takes place 20 years after the death of Crowe’s character Maximus.

READ MORE: ‘Gladiator 2’: Barry Keoghan In Talks To Play Emperor Geta In Ridley Scott’s Roman Empire Sequel

“I’m sure at some point in time they’ll want to ask me about something, but they haven’t brought anything up in a while,” Crowe said on the radio show. “It’s an extension of the narrative, but it is long beyond Maximus’ passing, so it doesn’t really involve me at all.” But despite his lack of involvement, Crowe sounded excited about Scott’s sequel and his choice for its leading man. “I hear that young fella Paul is a good dude, and I wish him the best of luck with it,” Crowe continued. “I think where they’re picking the story up from, a young Lucius, stepping into the role of emperor. I think that’s a very smart idea within the world of the film that we created.”

In “Gladiator 2,” Mescal plays a grown-up Lucius, nephew of Joaquin Phoenix‘s deceased Emperor Commodus, son of Connie Nielson‘s Lucilla, and grandson of Marcus Aurelius. Story details for the sequel are still unknown, but Denzel Washington and Barry Keoghan join Mescal in the upcoming film.  

David Scarpa, who pens Scott’s “Napoleon,” due out this year from Apple, is the scribe on “Gladiator 2.” And the sequel sees many people who worked on the 2000 film return, including costume designer Janty Yates and production designer Arthur Max.  Scott Free President Michael Pruss co-produces with Scott, along with Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher through Red Wagon Entertainment.

Crowe looks forward to seeing the sequel, but he admitted he’s a little envious he’s not part of the sequel’s production. “You know, no doubt I’ll end up having hundreds of friends of mine working on it,” Crowe said. “I already know designers and leather workers making the armor and things like that. I don’t want to dwell on it too much because it does take me back to a period of time when obviously I was significantly younger.”

“And you know, the rose-colored glasses of that experience now are perfectly crystallized,” Crowe continued. “I look back on it, and I loved every minute of it, and that wasn’t actually the case at the time. I do like being on a period movie set. Stepping into those sorts of costumes and those sorts of situations and stuff, it has great appeal to me. There’s a slight edge of jealousy that people get to have that experience that I had once.”

So, Crowe has to wait to be entertained this time instead of doing the entertaining. That means he waits, like the rest of us, for “Gladiator 2” to hit theaters on November 22, 2024. Expect more casting news on Scott’s sequel soon.