Talks are underway for a sequel to the 2012 Judge Dredd big screen adaptation starring Karl Urban. This was heavily hinted at by Karl Urban recently at Calgary Expo and has been confirmed by Rebellion CEO, Jason Kingsley on his personal Facebook account.
Rebellion are the owners of the IP rights to Judge Dredd and 2000AD, the comic where he first appeared in 1977.
Whether this is for the big or small screen is as yet unknown and Jason Kingsley is keen to point out to fans that these kind of talks do not always lead to a successful result.
Rebellion have run three comic sequels to the film, the first was Underbelly which was serialised in the Judge Dredd Megazine and received a US version one-shot that was reprinted twice due to demand. Whether these will form part of the canon for the screen version isn’t known.
I’m a big Judge Dredd fan, a reader of 2000AD from the start. I now help organise Lawgiver, an unofficial Judge Dredd convention now in its third year – the next is on 28th May 2016 in Bristol. So this news is great to hear.
What we do know at present is that Karl Urban is keen for a sequel. Olivia Thirlby, who portrayed Judge Anderson, has been linked with this news but nothing confirmed as yet whether she is interested.
From Karl Urban’s Twitter account:
I can also confirm that screen rights for Judge Dredd have reverted to Rebellion’s hands a few months ago. So it is the IP rights holder that is heading the negotiations. That means we can probably rest assured that any sequel will look at the source material with kindness.
Fans of Judge Dredd, comic and film, have hoped for a sequel ever since first seeing the Karl Urban version. There has been a long running campaign by fans that 2000AD supported. I know some people liked the Stallone version but that didn’t include the creators of Judge Dredd, John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra.
I first saw the film in August 2012 at a fan pre-screening 2000AD arranged in London. Karl Urban was there as was Alex Garland and Judge Dredd creators John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra. It was that experience that made me start writing Reviews for this blog.
I’ve talked to John about the 2012 film and the fan film Judge Minty and I know that he appreciated both greatly. Carlos is also very supportive of both those versions – he can’t speak higher of the team behind Judge Minty.
As for the IP owners, Rebellion, the founders of Rebellion (brothers Jason & Chris Kingsley) were fans before they bought the rights to 2000AD and Judge Dredd. They love the character and are passionate about how it is depicted. They are in my opinion very safe hands for the character I’ve followed for 39 years. Not only that but Jason is a Jouster and a Trustee of Royal Armouries – I’m a big Jousting fan and a regular at Royal Armouries Leeds.
So, given that the creators liked the 2012 film; Rebellion have control back, Alex Garland did a great job but if he wasn’t taking it forward I’d be concerned; Karl Urban is involved… If this comes off I think it’ll be great.
Personally I’d love to see a TV series that could feed in to a cinema release. That works for Marvel. The Daredevil and Jessica Jones series on Netflix also illustrate how well a tv series can deliver something similar in tone to the 2012 film.
As Jason cautions us though these talks don’t always deliver. So fans will need to manage their expectations. But as news goes, this is the best we have had for a while. Mind you, I have already asked Jason if I can have a cameo 😉 .