Movies of the Colosseum Quiz

By: Nathan Chandler
Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

The Roman Colosseum has inspired violence and romance for centuries. How much do you know about movies that use the Colosseum as a backdrop?

The Colosseum is also known as what?

It's also called the Flavian Amphitheatre, and it's smack in the middle of Rome, Italy. Its familiar arena has been featured (or imitated) in many major film productions.

In what year did the original "Ben-Hur" movie hit theaters?

The very first "Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ" was released in 1925. Many of its scenes were shot in Rome. This was a silent film that wound up inspiring multiple remakes.

What was the budget of "Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ"?

In 1925, $4 million was a lot of money for a movie, and even though the studio conducted a massive marketing campaign, it wound up with a net loss on its hands.

Who starred in 2010's "When in Rome"?

Kristen Bell starred alongside Josh Duhamel in "When in Rome," a romantic comedy that uses multiple Rome locations, including the Colosseum.

In what year was the first non-silent version of "Ben-Hur" released?

The 1959 movie was a remake of the 1925 film. It was a production of massive scale and employed hundreds of people just for the purpose of set building.

How many extras were needed to film 1959's "Ben-Hur"?

A mind-boggling 10,000 extras were needed to create some of the film's most memorable scenes.

Which actor did NOT appear in "When in Rome"?

Nicholson wasn't in this one, but there were numerous other stars, from Shaquille O'Neal to Will Arnett. It was all for naught because the film received mostly bad reviews.

Who directed "To Rome With Love"?

Woody Allen wrote and directed this movie, and it was his first time onscreen in more than half a decade. The story is actually four distinct plotlines, all happening in Rome.

Most of "Roman Holiday" was actually shot in Los Angeles.

The film was shot on location in various parts of Rome. A lot of shooting also took place in Rome's famed Cinecitta studios.

Where did the crew for 2000's "Gladiator" shoot the fight scenes set at the Colosseum?

The set builders constructed a 52-foot high replica that was about one-third the size of the real Colosseum … and they built it in Malta.

How much did it cost to build the replica of the Colosseum for "Gladiator"?

The replica alone added $1 million to the cost of making the movie, and it took months to complete the job.

What was the budget for the 2016 version of "Ben-Hur"?

The huge $100 million budget was a waste -- the movie was one of the years biggest flops.

Who did NOT star in 1953's "Roman Holiday"?

Holden wasn't in this one, but Hepburn and Peck were. Hepburn won an Academy Award for her work in this romantic comedy.

Who does Bruce Lee fight at the Colosseum in "Way of the Dragon"?

Lee takes on Colt (Chuck Norris) in one of the movie's biggest moments. For a time, the movie was the last film to be shot inside the Colosseum.

How many Academy Awards did 1960's "Spartacus" win?

It won four of the coveted awards, including Best Art Direction and Best Costume Design.

How was the Colosseum built for 2000's "Gladiator"?

Computer graphics rebuilt the old Colosseum to make it look almost new.

Why was the crew of 2016's "Ben-Hur" prohibited from filming a race scene at the Circus Maximus, which is near the Colosseum?

A public reason was never stated, but it's safe to assume that officials in Rome didn't want the film crew damaging their priceless Circus.

How many live extras were there inside the fake Colosseum for "Gladiator"?

There were 2,000 real people used as extras inside the fake Colosseum. But there were 33,000 more generated solely by computer magic.

What sort of creature makes an appearance in "20 Million Miles to Earth," climbing parts of the Roman ruins?

A weird blob evolves into a bipedal reptile that's reminiscent of Godzilla, and then it rampages all over Rome, including the Colosseum.

For "Gladiator," set builders actually built parts of the bowels of the Colosseum, including an elevator system to lift the fighters to the arena.

They did indeed build parts of the underground areas of the Colosseum. The lift system was intentionally crude but took a lot of work to get just right.

Why was there a riot before the filming of the famous chariot race scene for "Ben-Hur"?

The movie required thousands of paid extras, and high unemployment rates meant that the positions were hotly contested. When people were turned away, they rioted.

In 2003's "The Core," how is the Colosseum wrecked?

An insane lightning storm ravages all of Rome and strikes the Colosseum, too, lighting up the arena with bright white light.

In 2006, the crew of "Jumper" was granted filming access inside the Colosseum for how many days?

In a very rare exception, Rome film officials allowed the crew inside for three precious days. They blew it by making, well, "Jumper."

After being publicly announced, how long did it take to make "Ben-Hur"?

The exorbitant production took many millions of dollars and a lot of construction. It wasn't finished for seven years.

Who wrote a sequel to "Gladiator"?

Nick Cave, the brooding musician, actually wrote a sequel about a time-traveling gladiator, but the project never moved forward.

When was the action flick "Double Team" filmed?

Starring Jean-Claude Van Damme, Mickey Rourke and, um -- Dennis Rodman -- this terrible movie was released in 1997.

"Double Team" used a location meant to look like the Colosseum, but it wasn't. Where were those scenes filmed?

Instead of using the real Colosseum, the crew ventured to France.

How many filming locations were required for "Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ"?

Three of the locations were in California, and the other three were set right in Italy, especially Rome.

How is the Colosseum destroyed in "Megiddo: The Omega Code 2"?

A huge meteor blasts the Colosseum in this $20 million movie, which died a horrible death, too, by only making about $6 million.

Where was 1954's "Demetrius and the Gladiators" filmed?

This movie uses Rome as a primary backdrop … but it was entirely filmed on sets built in Los Angeles. It starred Victor Mature and Susan Hayward.

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