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    Paul Mescal Bulked Up For ‘Gladiator II’ But Did Not Want To “End Up Looking More Like An Underwear Model Than A Warrior”

    The sequel to the 2000s Gladiator is arguably one of the most highly anticipated films in 2024. Set to release in November this year, Gladiator II will be directed by Ridley Scott with a star studded cast including Normal People’ star Paul Mescal playing the lead. 

    Apart from Paul Mescal, Denzel Washington, Pedro Pascal, Connie Nielsen are some other names starring in the movie. Mescal reportedly landed the role of Lucius in the first meeting with Scott in under 30 minutes. He is also seemingly preparing for it well, though he has some concerns over growing too bulky over the role. Here’s what the star said.

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    Paul Mescal Bulked Up For ‘Gladiator II’ 

    Paul Mescal in 'Gladiator II'
    Paul Mescal in ‘Gladiator II’

    Gladiator II‘ has a narrative revolving around the character of Lucius, Lucilla’s son from the first movie. Paul Mescal landed the role pretty easily as director Ridley Scott was already impressed with his performance in ‘Normal People’. Besides, his nose played a role in landing him the position too.

    My nose just is kind of Roman,” Mescal said during a recent interview as he opened up about how he landed the role. “So it’s useful in this context. The nose that I absolutely hated when I was in secondary school — and used to get ribbed for — became very, very useful when Ridley needed somebody to be in ‘Gladiator II,’” Mescal said while speaking to Vanity Fair.

    However, it’s not all cakewalk. The actor has put significant efforts to shape his body in a way that he fits the role of the warrior that he is playing in the film. “I just wanted to be big and strong and look like somebody who can cause a bit of damage when shit hits the fan,” Mescal said.

    “I think also, sometimes, one could, in striving for that perfect look, end up looking more like an underwear model than a warrior,” Mescal added. 

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    Pedro Pascal Was Intimidated By Paul Mescal 

    Pedro Pascal in 'Gladiator II'
    Pedro Pascal in ‘Gladiator II’

    Paul Mescal’s transformation was so impressive that even Pedro Pascal felt intimidated while fighting him on screen. In a previous interview, Mescal spoke to Vanity Fair about his transformation. “Muscles start to grow, and that can be deemed aesthetic in certain capacities, but there is something about feeling strong in your body that elicits just a different feeling,” he said.

    You carry yourself differently,” Mescal added. “It has an impact on you psychologically in a way that is useful for the film,” he added. Pedro Pascal, who plays Marcus Acacius, said he gave Mescal a nickname on set. Mescal was called “Brick Wall Paul” on set. 

    ‘The Last of Us’ star said, “He got so strong. I would rather be thrown from a building than have to fight him again,” referring to Mescal. Pascal added, “To go up against somebody that fit and that talented and that much younger. … It’s brutal, man.” 

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    Nilova Jasu
    Nilova Jasu
    Nilova Jasu is an entertainment author at FirstCuriosity. With prior experience working at various celebrity blogs, she takes pride in being a know-it-all when it comes to pop culture. Being a student of medicine, Grey's Anatomy is Nilova's 'comfort watch'. A massive fan of Robert Downey Jr, whenever she is not reading up on the latest celebrity scoop on Instagram and Twitter, Nilova's busy buring her head in storybooks, playing with her pet cats or bingeing on the latest Netflix release.


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