Ridley Scott’s Gladiator 2 is set to collect a massive $50 million rebate from the Malta Film Commission, the biggest ever given in Europe.
Although the production of Gladiator 2 is currently on pause until the SAG-AFTRA strike concludes, the movie is set to receive quite a bit of money from the Malta Film Commission. According to the Times of Malta, Gladiator 2 will collect a €46.7 million rebate, which converts to over $50 million in U.S. dollars.
The Malta Film Commission promises production companies up to 40% cash back if they film in Malta. Not a bad deal, but this one seems to benefit Gladiator 2 more than the country of Malta. Although Gladiator 2 is filming in Malta, the production has brought in crew members and actors from other countries, as well as equipment, props, costumes, and machinery. The report notes that industry insiders say “only a fraction of the film’s entire spend eventually ends up working its way into the Maltese economy.” The Gladiator 2 rebate has broken the record as the biggest ever given in the EU.
The first Gladiator movie was shot in Malta over twenty years ago and reportedly left around €21 million in the Maltese economy. There was no rebate plan in place at that time, so the government didn’t need to return any money for the privilege. “This time round, we’re giving the sequel €46.7 million against a local direct expenditure of not more than €55 million, so we’d be lucky as a country if we manage to end up with €10 million in our economy,” said a top industry insider. The Malta government has claimed that the movie industry has injected €85 million into Malta over the last year, but hasn’t explained how that money made its way into the economy.
Ridley Scott is directing the Gladiator sequel, which has been scripted by David Scarpa (All The Money In the World). The film stars Paul Mescal (Aftersun) as Lucius, the young boy who idolized Maximus (Russell Crowe) in the original movie. The cast also includes Denzel Washington (The Equalizer 3), Pedro Pascal (The Mandalorian), Joseph Quinn (Stranger Things), Connie Nielsen (Wonder Woman), May Calamawy (Moon Knight), Lior Raz (The Crowded Room), Peter Mensah (Spartacus), Matt Lucas (Wonka), Fred Hechinger (The White Lotus), and Derek Jacobi (Murder on the Orient Express). Russell Crowe isn’t involved in the new Gladiator movie, but he did express a slight amount of jealousy about the experience Mescal has ahead of him.
Gladiator 2 will hit theaters on November 22, 2024.