Looks like Paul Mescal is bulking up nicely for what will be the most high-profile role of his career, starring in "Gladiator 2," which will bow in November of 2024.
It’s Ridley Scott’s sequel to his massively successful, multiple Oscar-winning "Gladiator" back in 2000 which starred Russell Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix.
A 23-second video of Mescal lifting weights surfaced last week online, and wow, he’s clearly taking the assignment seriously!
And his fans have taken notice – the clip has been viewed millions of times across different accounts.
🚨 — the man is training hard! Paul Mescal is already working for his new character in Gladiator 2! pic.twitter.com/yATM8jKWvB— best of paul mescal (@paulmescalfiles) June 21, 2023
The Co Kildare native, 27, doesn’t plan on making himself look like a freak who took too many ‘roids, though. Earlier this year, he told The Hollywood Reporter about getting ripped, "With films like this and superhero films, there is sometimes a focus on that which I don’t find that interesting.
"Of course, there’s a physical robustness required for the character, but past that, I’m not interested.
"This guy’s got to fight and got to be a beast. And whatever that looks and feels like is right for me, is what it’s going to be.
"Sometimes I see films and I’m like, ‘That person doesn’t look real.'"
Paul Mescal says he won’t be bulking up to superhero extremes for #Gladiator2: “With films like this...there is sometimes a focus on that, which I don't find that interesting...Sometimes I see films and I’m like, ‘That person doesn’t look real.’" https://t.co/A7p3CbnDrw pic.twitter.com/vqBYvFDIw4— The Hollywood Reporter (@THR) February 22, 2023
"Gladiator 2" is currently filming in Morocco. Earlier this month, several crew members were injured on set while filming a stunt sequence, Variety reported. No one was seriously hurt.
In other news, it looks like Mescal's dad, Paul Senior, has the acting bug too. He’s going to star in a play about the big showband era in Donegal, circa the 1960s, that will debut next month in Tallaght, Co Dublin.
Mr. Mescal has been acting since his teenage years growing up in Co Clare, he told Monday’s Irish Times. And when he retires from his job teaching primary school in Kildare, he plans to devote more time to the stage.
Does he have any advice for his Oscar-nominated, A-list son and namesake?
“(He) never did have any sort of bias towards being an actor until he hit his mid-teens," Paul's proud pop said.
"There wouldn’t have been any occasion for me to impart knowledge to him. But yes, if he did see me now, he would be the one imparting knowledge."
"Are Ya Dancin’? A Showband Story" will be onstage from July 13-15 at the Civic Theatre in Tallaght.
*This column first appeared in the June 28 edition of the weekly Irish Voice newspaper, sister publication to IrishCentral.