Fresh off a BAFTA win and an Oscar nomination, Barry Keoghan is joining the next big prestige blockbuster.
The Hollywood Reporter notes Keoghan “is in talks to join Paul Mescal in Ridley Scott’s untitled Gladiator sequel.” Keoghan will play a character named Emperor Geta, though in real-life, Geta never became an Emperor. Keoghan’s Geta is reportedly the villainous lead role.
In the Gladiator sequel, Mescal plays Lucius, the son of Lucilla (Connie Nielsen), as a grown man. Lucius also was the nephew of Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix), the son of Roman leader Marcus Aurelius who murdered his father and seized the throne. The story will take place years after the first film, where Lucius and Maximus initially meet.
Keoghan is coming off a best supporting actor Oscar nomination for The Banshees of Inisherin, a film that landed nine Academy Award nominations. The actor is also best known for his work The Killing of a Sacred Deer and Eternals. He also appeared in the 2022 film The Batman by filmmaker Matt Reeves, where he was teased as the upcoming Joker for that universe.
Keoghan is currently shooting Trey Edward Shults’ latest movie alongside Jenna Ortega and The Weeknd and also recently signed on to play infamous Old West outlaw Billy the Kid.
Gladiator 2 is set for release in late 2024.