There is no doubt that we are amused. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Ridley Scott’s long-gestating sequel to his historical epic Gladiator from 2000, Gladiator 2, will star Paul Mescal and Academy Award nominee Brendan Keoghan.
Emperor Geta will be portrayed by Keoghan, who, like his co-star Mescal, failed to win an Oscar on Sunday night. Geta was a real Roman emperor, however it is unclear if this will be historically accurate or merely a case of reality being used to support fiction. Along with Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, and Kerry Condon, Keoghan received nominations for Best Supporting Actor and Best Original Screenplay at the Oscars this past weekend for his heartbreaking performance in The Banshees of Inisherin. Martin McDonagh, the film’s director, was also nominated for Best Director and Best Original Screenplay.
As evidenced most clearly by his breakthrough performance in The Killing of a Sacred Deer, which also starred Colin Farrell, his unnerving onscreen roles have seen him cast in antiheroic parts or as characters that are eccentric and acted with a feeling of discomfort. He has experience working on high-budget films, having starred in two mega-franchise films, including Marvel’s Eternals, in which Chloé Zhao played him, and DC’s The Batman, in which he featured briefly as The Joker in the Matt Reeves movie. Recently, it was revealed that Keoghan would return for The Batman’s sequel.
At the time of its initial release, Gladiator brought approximately $457 million at the global box office. It received 12 Academy Award nominations and won 5, including Best Film and Best Actor for Russell Crowe’s 2001 performance as Maximus.