Facts you might not know about 'Gladiator'
The screenplay was inspired by a book that had been kicking around for a while
Maximus wasn’t known as Maximus originally: Some of the characters in “Gladiator” are real people from history
Mel Gibson turned down the lead role: Russell Crowe ended up playing Maximus, but he was not the first choice
One of the actors was a pretty strong guy: Tigris of Gaul, a retired gladiator called back into action by Commodus to kill Maximus
Oliver Reed died during the production
Reed’s Proximo was supposed to live until the end of the movie
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