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Glicked: film fans prepare for ‘Gladiator II’ and ‘Wicked’ release day doubleheader

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After the global domination of ‘Barbenheimer’ in the summer of 2023, film fans can look forward to the phenomenon of ‘Glicked’ in the final months of 2024.

Two of the most anticipated movies of the year – Ridley Scott’s Gladiator II and Jon M. Chu’s Wicked – are set to hit cinemas worldwide on the same date, November 22.

The latter film, the first of a two-part adaptation of the smash stage musical of the same name, had initially planned to release on November 27, but has now moved the date to avoid clashing with Disney’s Moana 2.

It now puts it on a collision course with the ancient Roman epic, and fans have already dubbed the dual release date as ‘Glicked’, in homage to the Barbie/Oppenheimer head-to-head that ended up benefiting both of those films.

Gladiator II star Paul Mescal has commented on the clash, telling ET: “Wickdiator doesn’t really roll off the tongue does it? I think my preference would probably be Glicked if it has a similar effect to what it did for Barbie and Oppenheimer. It would be amazing ’cause I think the films couldn’t be more polar opposites and it worked in that context previously. So fingers crossed people come out and see both films on opening weekend.”

“We’re going with #GLICKED for their opening weekend, right?” wrote one X/Twitter user about the anticipated phenomenon.“Barbenheimer walked so glicked could run,” wrote another.

Scott’s sequel to the Russell Crowe-starring, Oscar-winning original is set 20 years later, and will see Mescal leading a new story that focuses on his character Lucius, the nephew of Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix) who was killed by Crowe’s character Maximus in the original. Lucius is the son of Lucilla (Connie Nielson, who reprises her role in the film) and grandson of Marcus Aurelius.

Earlier today, the trailer for Gladiator II dropped, including a flashback to the original film, and also featuring Denzel Washington, who appears to play Lucius’ trainer. See it here:

Recently, Pedro Pascal, who also stars in the film, said he would “rather be thrown from a building” than fight Mescal again after shooting their scenes together in Gladiator II.

“To go up against somebody that fit and that talented and that much younger….It’s brutal, man,” he said. “I call him Brick Wall Paul.”

Crowe himself has spoken about how the film’s existence makes him feel “slightly uncomfortable”.

“Of course, I’m dead and I have no say in what gets done,” he said. “But a couple of the things I’ve heard I’m like ‘No, no, no, that’s not in the moral journey of that particular character’. But I can’t say anything, it’s not my place, I’m six foot under. So we’ll see what that is like.”

Wicked, on the other hand, released its trailer back in February during the Super Bowl broadcast. Watch here:

It depicts Cynthia Erivo as Elphaba and Ariana Grande as Glinda, while the trailer also gives glimpses of Dorothy, the lion, scarecrow, tin woodman and Toto, as well as other big stars in the movie like Michelle Yeoh (who plays Madame Morrible), Jeff Goldblum (the Wizard of Oz) and Jonathan Bailey (Fiyero Tigelaar).

It is the first of a two-part film adaptation of the stage musical, with Wicked: Part Two expected on November 26, 2025.

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