Gladiator 2 CinemaCon Trailer Keeps Russell Crowe’s Vengeance Theme Alive But Drops Hans Zimmer to Include a Famous Kanye West Hit Instead

'Gladiator 2' unveils first look at Paul Mescal as Lucius as trailer jams to Kanye West's 'No Church in the Wild'.

Gladiator 2 CinemaCon Trailer Keeps Russell Crowe’s Vengeance Theme Alive But Drops Hans Zimmer to Include a Famous Kanye West Hit Instead


  • CinemaCon exhibited the first footage of Paul Mescal's Gladiator 2.
  • Director Ridley Scott delivered an introduction to the upcoming sequel.
  • The latest trailer featured Kanye West's hit song 'No Church in the Wild'.
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Fans of Ridley Scott’s Gladiator franchise must be rejoicing after the first footage from the much-anticipated sequel to the 2000 blockbuster was screened for CinemaCon goers last Thursday. An introduction from the director all the way from London was shown at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.

Gladiator 2000
Russell Crowe in Gladiator (2000)

With Paul Mescal in the lead, the movie promises to be “possibly more extraordinary than the first” as the veteran filmmaker pledges the second installment is worth the twenty-four years of waiting.

Gladiator 2’s First Footage Introduces Paul Mescal On The Lead

The footage exhibited the first look at Paul Mescal as Lucius, the nephew of Commodus and the son of Lucilla. The figure appeared astoundingly fit and fighting inside the arena against a man carried by a rhino and a herd of baboons. The character says:


I remember that day. I never forgot it. That a slave could take revenge against an emperor. That a slave could get justice in the arena.”

For many months, fans campaigned for Mescal to land the part of Lucius, a role once earned by Spencer Treat Clark in the 2000 film. The actor said in the same video introduction at the event (via EW):

Working on this film was one of the standout moments of my life to date. Getting to go to work every day with Sir Ridley Scott behind the camera is a good day to work in any context.”

Paul Mescal Gladiator
Paul Mescal in Normal People

Director Ridley Scott previously treated fans to a clue on what they can expect from the sequel. He said in a conversation with Rotten Tomatoes:

He’s playing Lucius. He’s been out in the wilderness, having lost touch with his mother. His mother lost touch with him. She doesn’t know where he is. She thinks he might be dead.”

The famed filmmaker also shared why he chose to cast Mescal in his upcoming project via Total Film magazine:


I watched Normal People. It’s not my kind of show but I saw four episodes in a row – boom, boom, boom. I was thinking, ‘Who the hell is this Paul Mescal?’ And then I watched the whole series. And then, suddenly, Gladiator 2 came up, because the script was working pretty well. And I kept thinking about Paul. And that was it.”

The hype around Gladiator 2 is undoubtedly high, but one thing fans noticed about the latest footage was the interesting choice of background music.

Gladiator 2 Jams To Kanye West’s No Church in the Wild

Gladiator 2000 movie
Gladiator (2000)

Hans Zimmer’s music graced Russell Crowe’s Gladiator, but it seems the latest film is getting a modern twist as it featured a remix of Kanye West and Jay-Z’s No Church in the Wild.

The lyrics to the song certainly made references alluding to the Roman Empire: “Tears on the mausoleum floor, blood stains the Colosseum doors, lies on the lips of a priest, Thanksgiving disguised as a feast.”


It’s only a matter of months before fans get to witness the revival of the cult-classic film.

Be sure to catch Gladiator 2 in cinemas this November 22, 2024.


Written by Ariane Cruz

Articles Published: 2121

Ariane Cruz, Senior Content Writer. She has been contributing articles for FandomWire since 2021, mostly covering stories about geek pop culture. With a degree in Communication Arts, she has an in-depth knowledge of print and broadcast journalism. Her other works can also be seen on Screen Rant and CBR.