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Duncan Jones became a name to watch thanks to his excellent directorial debut Moon. He’s been shooting his follow-up film, Source Code, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, and the film is now in the editing room. Now we’ve got an update on that film’s progress, as well as some thoughts about the success of Moon and the new movie version of Judge Dredd, which Jones decided not to direct. Read More »

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Karl Urban May Be the New Judge Dredd

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So the word — the very advance word, mind you — is that this new movie version of Judge Dredd might not suck. Pete Travis (Vantage Point) is directing from a script by Alex Garland (Sunshine) and that’s enough of a pedigree, combined with the basic Judge Dredd backstory, to get me interested.

Now there’s word that Dredd could be played by Karl Urban, who isn’t a huge marquee name, but got audience attention in Star Trek and will be in Red and Priest. Would he make a good Dredd? Very possibly, yes. Read More »

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We’ve been hearing about the possibility of a new Judge Dredd movie for some time. Now the project has taken a big step closer to being real: in a deal made just prior to Cannes, where the film will be shopped around for distribution, Andrew Macdonald‘s company DNA Film has made a deal to finance Judge Dredd as a 3D feature with a budget around $50m. And there’s a director: Vantage Point‘s Pete Travis.

But here’s the catch, and the part that could, somehow, be reason to hope this version won’t suck: this is not a studio financing deal. The money comes from Indian outfit Reliance Big Entertainment. Without a studio calling some of the bone-headed shots that made the Sylvester Stallone version miss the mark, could this be…good? Read More »

UPDATE: According to three sources close to the Judge Dredd film (two are employees at Rebellion, the publishers of 2000AD, the other is Jock, responsible for the concept art at the head of this post) a draft of Alex Garland’s Judge Dredd screenplay has been shown to John Wagner, who created Dredd alongside artist Carlos Ezquerra. What isn’t clear – yet – is what feedback Wagner offered, or how that feedback has/hasn’t had an impact.
It is worth noting that many Dredd stories credited to either Alan Grant or John Wagner alone were actually written by the two of them in partnership, like some kind of reverse Lennon and McCartney.

The closest UK equivalent to Comic-Con would be the MCM Expo and I’ve been there today, looking for scoop. It’s not one half the size of San Diego’s mammoth geek Mecca (okay, not a quarter of the size, even) but it is rapidly expanding in terms of attendance figures, exhibitors and nifty special events. If you’ve got a good nose and alert ears, there’s all sort of great stuff to sniff out and tune into.

The major panel on day one saw Andy Diggle, Jock and Idris Elba taking to the stage to promote The Losers. Meanwhile, a less high profile event saw Alan Grant joining a group of comics creators in discussing multi-media crossovers such as comics adapting stories from other media, and other media leeching ideas from the comics world. What connected these two panels? Talk of DNA’s upcoming Judge Dredd movie.

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Jock – no surname required, he’s just Jock, like Parry or Moses – is a comics artist with a great portion of his impressive portfolio living in the pages of seminal UK weekly 2000AD. He’s also a very busy concept artist for the movies, it would seem, or at least for those being adapted from strips he originally illustrated. Perusing his tweets, you’ll find not only updates on The Losers, which is currently shooting, but also brief but exciting update on the new Judge Dredd film currently being prepared by Danny Boyle’s DNA films.
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DNA Films Greenlights New Judge Dredd Movie

According to an announcement on 2000 AD’s message boards (via AICN), DNA films, along with Rebellion and and 2000 AD, have greenlit a new Judge Dredd film. According to the Rebellion’s CEO and Creative Director, “We can’t give away too many details at this point, but we’re looking forward to working with DNA Films to bring Judge Dredd back to the big screen.” Production is scheduled to begin in 2009.

This news is a bit shocking to me, as I remember that the first Dredd film, which starred Sylvester Stallone and Rob Schneider, was widely regarded as one of the biggest financial failures of all time, requiring a production budget of almost $100 million, but only earning a small fraction of that back domestically. Furthermore, critics weren’t too kind to it either. Nonetheless, with an interesting, developed and wildly popular sci-fi universe, and with the company behind Sunshine and 28 Weeks Later backing this up, I’m actually more hopeful about this project than apprehensive. What do you think?

Discuss: Do you want to see a better version of Judge Dredd brought back to the big screen?

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