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Fun Facts: Gladiator

Fun Facts: Gladiator

• While visiting the real Coliseum in Rome, director Ridley Scott said to the production designer Arthur Max that it was "too small," so they actually built and created an imaginary one, largely inspired by English and French Romantic painters, and Nazi architect Albert Speer.

• While doing the long and demanding gladiatorial scenes, Russell Crowe even broke bones in his foot and his hip, and injured both bicep tendons.

• Actor Oliver Reed actually died from a fatal heart attack during the filming, and so the plot had to be altered, changes made and CGI used to edit the footage. Gladiator was his last movie.

• The sequences of deceased Oliver Reed had to be done with CGI and that cost an additional $3 million.

• Originally, Mel Gibson was offered the main role, but he turned it down, saying that at 43 he was too old to play Maximus.

• One of the other guys proposed for the role of Maximus was Antonio Banderas.

• Ridley Scott was persuaded and convinced to do this movie after heated discussions. When Walter F. Parkes (head of DreamWorks) and producer Douglas Wick came to him with a huge re-production of the 1872 painting called "Pollice Verso" meaning "Thumbs Down" by Jean-Léon Gérôme— where a gladiator proudly stands over the guy he has defeated— Scott became fascinated.

• Most of the animals in the movie were on loan from the zoo in Rabat, the capital city of Morocco.

• 24 chariots were created, but only 6 used for the filming…

• The Coliseum scenes actually had more than 400 cardboard real-life size cut-outs of spectators.

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