Gladiator movie celebrates 20 years on 1 May

Ridley Scott is reportedly developing a sequel to Gladiator.

Gladiator, the epic historical action drama movie directed by Ridley Scott and starring Russell Crowe, was released on 1 May 2000.

The film became an instant hit, making $460 million at the box office worldwide, and winning five Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Actor for Crowe.

The movie saw Crowe portray Roman general Maximus Decimus Meridius, who is betrayed when Commodus (played by Joaquin Phoenix), the ambitious son of Emperor Marcus Aurelius, murders his father and seizes the throne.

Sent into slavery, Maximus becomes a ferocious gladiator in Rome's Colosseum, rising through the ranks to avenge the murders of his family and his emperor.

20 years after the blockbuster first enthralled audiences around the world, rumours in the movie industry persist that Scott is developing a sequel to Gladiator.

The planned movie is allegedly set two decades after the death of Maximus.

The story reportedly centres on the now-adult Lucius, the nephew of Commodus and the son of Lucilla, Maximus's former lover and the older child of Marcus Aurelius, played by Connie Nielsen in Scott’s original film.

       Read also:

As the 20th anniversary approaches Crowe revealed to Empire that Gladiator almost had a very different ending.

As we all know, Maximus dies at the hands of Commodus in the final battle scene - but that was not how the film was originally intended to end: Massimo was supposed to have lived.

Crowe said that about half-way through filming Scott approached him and said: "‘Look, the way this is shaping up, I don’t see how you live. This character is about one act of pure vengeance for his wife and child, and, once he’s accomplished that, what does he do?"

Crowe agreed with the director's vision, saying it felt "right", leaving us with the emotionally-charged finale that we know today.

The actor also revealed to Empire that his pivotal speech as Maximus was almost ruined due to the static electricity from his helmet and the effect it had on his hair.

"Every time I took it off the hairs on the top of my head stood up. I tried doing it slowly, I tried doing it fast, but every time two hairs stand up like I'm a f***ing Teletubby," Crowe explained, revealing that Scott solved the problem by zooming in on his face.