Russell Crowe is totally over fans constantly asking him questions about the highly anticipated “Gladiator” sequel.
More than 20 years ago, the Australian actor starred as Maximus, a general-turned-gladiator who devotes himself to seeking vengeance against Emperor Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix).
After “Gladiator 2” was announced in 2018, Crowe, now 59, revealed that he wouldn’t be reprising his role — especially considering that (spoiler alert) his character dies at the end of the popular 2000 film.
But with the new film’s release date just months away, fans are now bugging Crowe with their burning questions about the sequel.
“They should be fucking paying me for the amount of questions I am asked about a film I am not even in,” Crowe said at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival in the Czech Republic on Saturday, Variety reported.
Explaining why he won’t reprise his Gladiator role, the actor continued, “It has nothing to do with me. In that world, I am dead. Six feet under. But I do admit to a certain tinge of jealousy, because it reminds me of when I was younger and what it meant for me, in my life.”
The historical drama directed by Ridley Scott boosted Crowe’s career, landing him an Oscar for Best Actor. The film also went on to score 12 Academy Award nominations and five wins.
Crowe added: “I don’t know anything about the cast, I don’t know anything about the plot. I am dead! But I know that if Ridley has decided to do a second part of the story, over 20 years later, he must have had very strong reasons. I can’t think of this movie being anything other than spectacular.”
Though Crowe won’t be appearing in “Gladiator 2,” the Oscar winner made it perfectly clear that he wouldn’t mind teaming up with Scott again in a separate interview with Deadline.
“We haven’t made a movie together for quite a while now. That’s not intentional — it’s just the way it’s worked out,” Crowe said.
He added: “But we’ve made — what is it? — five movies together. I’ve said this many times over the years, but there’s no better set for an actor like me to be on than one of Ridley Scott’s. He has the intellect that allows you to fully collaborate. He has the true, pure spirit of an artist.”
In March, Twitter users shared their excitement over the announcement that Denzel Washington was in the final stage of negotiations to star in the highly anticipated “Gladiator” sequel.
Washington’s role is still under wraps, but Deadline reported that “after reading the script, sources close to the project said [Washington] was excited about the bad-ass role Scott had written with him in mind.”
The “Gladiator” sequel is set to be released on Nov. 22, 2024.
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