William Hundert is a passionate Classics professor
inspires his students to study hard in order to become one of the three contestants for The Emperor's Club and be crowned"Mr. Julius Caesar", a competition which puts the top three students of his class in a contest where they will be asked questions regarding the Classics.
Hundert finds his tightly-controlled worldshaken when a new student, Sedgewick Bell (Emile Hirsch), walks into his classroom. Sedgewick Bell is the cocky son of a senior U.S Senator who possesses none of Hundert's principles. Initially, a fiercebattle of wills takes place between Hundert and Bell. Bell's rebellious nature quickly makes him the interest of the class
Despite Blythe's constant pleas not to break rules, Masoudi and evenstudious Mehta find themselves enjoying their rebellious tendencies with Bell. Despite this, Hundert is able to humiliate Bell when he asks the class to list, in chronological order, all the Roman emperors.All the other students comply in perfect unison, effectively embarrassing Bell who has not studied the course material. Hundert also makes a trip to Washington D.C. to meet with Senator Bell fromWest Virginia
After seeing a chastized Sedgewick, Hundert, then tries to develop a close student-teacher relationship as Hundert tries to become a mentor to Bell in order to help change him into abetter man. Bell starts studying, proving to be a bright student and eventually his grades improve enormously. Bell eventually finishes in the top three in Hundert's competition that precedes the Emperor'sClub contest, along with fellow classmates Masoudi and Mehta. Bell had actually earned his position at fourth place, until Hundert privately decided to raise his grade on the final essay afterreviewing it again, thus moving him above Blythe, the third place winner. Hundert is caught between celebrating Bell's newfound success and feeling guilty when he sees a despondent Blythe sitting all by...