'Gladiator II' gets 1st trailer starring Paul Mescal, Denzel Washington and Pedro Pascal

The film arrives in U.S. theaters Nov. 22.

July 9, 2024, 10:20 AM

"Are you not entertained?"

The trailer for Ridley Scott's highly anticipated upcoming film "Gladiator II" is here.

The trailer for the film, released Tuesday, builds anticipation for the Roman-era action sequel to Scott's classic Oscar-winning epic, which hit theaters to the tune of over $400 million worldwide following its 2000 release.

The upcoming sequel stars Paul Mescal as Lucius, the now-grown son of Connie Nielsen's character Lucilla from the first film, returning to Rome as a prisoner. Pedro Pascal plays Marcus Acacius, the general who demolished Lucius' adopted homeland, Numidia, leading to his enslavement.

Pedro Pascal appears in a still from the official trailer for "Gladiator II."
Paramount Pictures/YouTube

The trailer begins with a brief summary of Lucius' origin story, stating he did not know his birth place and that he "never knew a mother or a father." Later, Denzel Washington's character Macrinus, a wealthy arms dealer, is seen telling Lucius, "You will be my instrument."

Macrinus' intentions for Rome quickly become clear: "Rome must fall, I need only to give it a push."

Macrinus and Lucius' conversation sets the stage for the introduction of the Colosseum, where the gladiator battles are held.

After a collage of wartime scenes and Colosseum battles, the trailer concludes with an arena matchup of Lucius dueling Acacius in a classic gladiator showdown.

Paul Mescal appears in a still from the official trailer for "Gladiator II."
Paramount Pictures/YouTube

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Fans got a first glance at Mescal and Pascal as their respective characters, as well as initial details involving characters and plot, when Vanity Fair published its first look at the film on July 1, including interviews with the actors and director.

Denzel Washington appears in a still from the official trailer for "Gladiator II."
Paramount Pictures/YouTube

Mescal told Vanity Fair at the time that the overall theme of the movie reflected "what human beings will do to survive, but also what human beings will do to win," a theme similar to the original "Gladiator", which followed the life of Russell Crowe's Maximus.

"Where's the space for humanity? Where's the space for love, familial connection? And ultimately, will those things overcome this kind of greed and power? Those things are oftentimes directly in conflict with each other," he added.

"Gladiator II" arrives in theaters in the United States on Nov. 22.

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