Rumors have been swirling lately that Karl Urban was in line to take on the title role in the new Judge Dredd remake, and the actor wasn’t necessarily denying them at the recent San Diego Comic-Con 2010. Now comes word out of Movie-Con III (via Empire) that the rumors have evolved to reality, and Urban will be stepping into the shoes once worn by Sylvester Stallone in the 1995 movie of the same name.
Now, if you’re a fan of the ’95 movie, this might not be the best news to you, but let’s be honest: that was a fairly cheesy adaptation of a popular comic book series. The comic, created by John Wagner, Pat Mills, and Carlos Ezquerra, has been featured in the UK’s weekly comic book publication 2000 AD since its debut in 1977. It takes place in a futuristic world where judges are basically super-cops who apprehend, pass judgment upon, and even execute those that they find guilty.
Andrew Macdonald and Allon Reich made the confirmation, and said things that should get fans of the comic really excited for this particular new movie.
Macdonald had this to say about the difference between their vision and the ’95 movie, who’s involved, and when they’re shooting:
The main thing about Dredd is that itâ€™s a fantastic comic that was completely messed up 20 years ago. Our idea is to make a very hard, R-rated, gritty, realistic movie of Dredd in Megacity, so weâ€™ve got to get the tone right. Heâ€™s not going to take off his helmet. His bike is going to feel real. Heâ€™s going to hit people and itâ€™s going to feel real.
Thereâ€™s been a change in comic-book movies; they were treated un-seriously and now theyâ€™re treated seriously. Weâ€™ve cast a guy called Karl Urban to play Dredd. Weâ€™ll be shooting in Johannesburg, itâ€™s being directed by Pete Travis, weâ€™re shooting with the people who did District 9 â€“ and if we get it right, Alex has a couple of ideas for other stories as well. Itâ€™s not based on any one comic, and John Wagner is involved in every decision.
Urban is of course known for his many character roles in some highly popular films and franchises like The Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Bourne Supremacy, and J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek. He’s also appeared in movies like Ghost Ship, The Chronicles of Riddick, and Pathfinder. The director, Pete Travis, has previously delivered the likes of Vantage Point and Endgame.
What do you think of the new Judge Dredd and how it’s being approached?