Russell Crowe as Maximus in the 2000 film 'Gladiator'

Sir Ridley Scott is said to be moving forward with plans for a follow-up to the highly successful "Gladiator" movie - which earned 11 Academy Award nominations and five wins, including Best Picture and Best Actor for Russell Crowe - with the 80-year-old filmmaker keen to direct the motion picture. 

Sources have told Deadline that Scott - who helmed the original - and his Scott Free Productions company are working on the possibility of a follow up to the 2000 epic historical drama, with Paramount set to develop the project. 

The film will tell the story of Lucius, the son of Lucilla, played by Connie Nielsen in the original, and the nephew of evil Commodus (Joaquin Phoenix). 

Last year, Scott teased plans for a possible 'Gladiator' sequel, admitting he had thought of a way to bring Crowe's character Maximus back from beyond the grave. 

He said: "I know how to bring him back. I was having this talk with the studio - 'but he's dead.' But there is a way of bringing him back.

"Whether it will happen I don't know. 'Gladiator' was 2000, so Russell's changed a little bit. He's doing something right now but I'm trying to get him back down here."

What's more, Nick Cave previously wrote his own script for a sequel in which Maximus was brought back from the dead. 

He said: "[Crowe] rang me up and asked if I wanted to write 'Gladiator 2'.For someone who had only written one film script, it was quite an ask. 

"'Hey Russell, didn't you die in 'Gladiator'?' 'Yeah, you sort that out.'

"So, he goes down to purgatory and is sent down by the gods, who are dying in heaven because there's this one god, there's this Christ character, down on Earth who is gaining popularity and so the many gods are dying so they send Gladiator back to kill Christ and his followers."

The original 'Gladiator' movie - which was made by DreamWorks - also featured Oliver Reed, who passed away from a heart attack in 1999 during a break in filming. 

As a result, the movie had to be completed using CGI technology for his character, and the late star was posthumously nominated for a Best Supporting Actor prize at the 2001 Oscars.