I remember going into 2012’s “Dredd” with very low expectations. After all, this was a reboot of “Judge Dredd,” a terrible ’90s action movie starring Sylvester Stallone as a tough street judge. What we got instead with “Dredd” was a genuinely visionary film. Director Pete Travis made something beautifully artful out of the savagery he depicted onscreen. Paul Leonard‘s exalting techno soundtrack also gave the film an avant-garde edginess that fit perfectly with the film’s atmosphere. The use of 3D was also second to none. Travis, using color and the best use of slo-mo I could recall in ages, made a film that was wholly auteur-ed and singular in its vision. Let us not forget that the screenplay was written by Alex Garland, a man who burst onto the directorial scene in 2015 with his brilliant “Ex Machina” and is now one of the most sought-after sci-fi filmmakers. Garland’s lean, mean scenario had none of the superfluous tropes that would hamper down most of the action movies we see today. I also can’t fail to mention Karl Urban who played a great, nasty hero as the titular character.
Despite critics missing the boat by greeting it with mixed reviews and the film completely tanking at the box office, “Dredd” has become a cult classic over time with a solid, loyal fan base that has become a monster in itself. You can thank home video for that and streaming services as well. I can understand the fascination with the film. It is such a re-watchable endeavor. Hell, I remember being sent a copy of the DVD by the studio and seeing it around 5 or 6 times in a span of a few months, which is quite rare for me to do.
Urban has mentioned countless times that he is very interested in making a sequel. This all leads to the rather disappointing news that Fox had turned down the script for a potential second chapter. Then the fan petitions for a sequel were hitting the web, most notably “Bring Back Dredd,” which has gathered 152,000 signatures thus far.
Now comes the news that Urban is in talks for the recently announced “Judge Dredd: Mega City One” TV series. At the Star Trek Las Vegas Convention he was quoted as saying: ““I am in discussions with them about that, I told them that if they write the material and give Dredd something to do and give him a function, I will be there. I would love to.”
The project will be an ensemble drama that follows a team of Judges — futuristic cops invested with the power to be judge, jury, and executioner — as they encounter the myriad challenges of a world in which east-coast cities have merged into a giant megalopolis. Despite its 22nd century setting, many of the issues they encounter will have echoes of those today — from the dangers of domestic terrorism to the tensions between the ultra-rich and the disenfranchised. Producers had previously said they wanted Urban to reprise his role, and it looks like they’re trying to make it happen.
Fingers crossed for fans because it looks like Urban could be back as Judge Dredd after all. [Comic Book]