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Paul Mescal’s Funny Nickname for Gladiator 2, Wicked Shares Release Date

Paul Mescal’s Funny Nickname for Gladiator 2, Wicked Shares Release Date

When the first trailer for Ridley Scott’s “Gladiator 2” dropped, fans quickly took to social media to share their reactions. The buzz didn’t stop there; another exciting tidbit has internet users talking: its release date coincides with that of “Wicked.”

The Jon M. Chu-directed film moved its premiere date five days earlier than initially announced. This means that on November 22, Paul Mescal, Pedro Pascal, and Denzel Washington will be going head-to-head with Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande.

Interestingly, this simultaneous release brings to mind the high-profile rivalry of last year’s major films: Greta Gerwig’s “Barbie” and Christopher Nolan’s “Oppenheimer.” The weekend both movies were released ignited a cultural event dubbed “Barbenheimer,” becoming one of the biggest movie events of 2023.

However, creating a catchy portmanteau for “Gladiator 2” and “Wicked” proves to be a bit more challenging than for “Barbie” and “Oppenheimer.” So far, fans have come up with the somewhat awkward “Wickdiator” and “Glicked.”

One question arises: Is “Glicked” pronounced as “glikd” or “gli-ked”? We’re guessing it’s the latter.

In an exclusive interview with Entertainment Tonight, Mescal commented, “Wickdiator doesn’t really roll off the tongue, does it?” He added, “I think my preference would probably be Glicked if it has a similar effect to what it did for Barbie and Oppenheimer. It would be amazing ’cause I think the films couldn’t be more polar opposites and it worked in that context previously. So fingers crossed people come out and see both films on opening weekend.”

Mescal is correct in noting the significant differences between the two films. “Wicked,” adapted from the Broadway musical, features well-known songs and has long been embedded in popular culture. On the other hand, “Gladiator 2” is a sequel to a massively successful film released 24 years ago, making Mescal only four years old when the original debuted. Mescal revealed he became a fan of the original film after watching it 10 years post-release, making leading the sequel a monumental task.

He expressed excitement about the movie’s homage to the original while also venturing in a new direction. Mescal mentioned, “I think it’s well balanced in that regard in terms of the physical action of the film and the balance of the kind of political aspects of the film as well.”

Director Ridley Scott took notice of Mescal during his performance in Hulu’s “Normal People,” which led to his casting as Lucius in “Gladiator 2.” Scott recalled, “When I watch anything, I tend to be clocking who’s interesting. It’s just in my DNA. And so, watching a TV show that’s not really my kind of TV show almost four years ago, I said, ‘Who’s this guy?’”

Scott scheduled a Zoom meeting with Mescal while he was starring in the stage play “A Streetcar Named Desire” in London. After a brief discussion, Mescal was cast without needing a camera test, leading Scott to call him a “special find.”

The actor detailed their meeting, noting, “We spent about 15 minutes talking about the story and another 10 minutes on Gaelic football, a sport I grew up playing. Maybe that helped, as I’m used to being physical.” Mescal received the offer a few weeks later, calling it “an immense honor” and acknowledging the importance of the role to many worldwide.

Mescal will share the Colosseum with Oscar-winner Denzel Washington, who plays former slave-turned-rich-arms-broker Macrinus, and Pedro Pascal, who takes on the role of Roman general Acacius. Connie Nielsen and Derek Jacobi are set to reprise their roles as Lucilla and Senator Gracchus, respectively.

Speaking about his co-stars, Mescal remarked, “I am in scenes with the great Denzel Washington and have made great friends with Pedro and Joe (Joseph Quinn, who plays one of the emperors Geta) and Connie and Fred (Hechinger, who plays the other emperor Caracalla).”

He added, “For many of us, especially the younger cast members, this job has been life-changing. We’re eagerly waiting for it to be released, but what keeps us grounded is knowing we’ve completed it. And having Ridley Scott at the helm was amazing.”

Mescal also mentioned that the original “Gladiator” is a film that “a lot of men my age” know how to “quote religiously.”

On that note, many also know almost all the lyrics to the songs from “Wicked.”

Both “Gladiator 2” and “Wicked” — or “Glicked,” if you will — are slated for release on November 22.

Source: ClutchPoints