Gerard Butler, the Scots actor who played King Leonidas in the Hollywood blockbuster “300”, has arrived in Greece to take part in the festivities marking 2,500 years since the Battle of Thermopylae.
But not only that — on March 14, Butler will defy the coronavirus scare and run in Sparta as one of the official torchbearers for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
The Hollywood star will forever be associated with the fierce battle cry “This is Sparta!” – a line which has become one of the more iconic in all of film history.
Speaking to Greek Reporter recently, Butler described “300” as the “most intense and enjoyable movie I ever made,” adding “It made me feel Greek!”
In a recent interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Butler revealed how he had lobbied hard for the part and worked out hard every day, but the most interesting part of his remarks was the tale behind that one line: “This is Sparta!”
The actor explained “I had done quite a few takes and most of them were ‘This is Sparta,’” said in a low, monotone growl. “And it’s part process and part insecurity, maybe. And I go, ‘Can I just try another?’”
The next take would be the often-imitated scream from director Zack Snyder’s film.
“And I turn around and all my army are literally like this,” Butler said with a hand over his mouth hiding laughter. “And I go up to Zack and I go, ‘That was too much?’ And he goes, ‘Yeah! But it was awesome!’”