Dredd At 10: Remembering The Film Franchise That Never Was

It’s hard to believe it’s been a decade since Karl Urban pulled out his best lip curl and grunted “I am the law” for director Pete Travis’ Dredd.

Much like the campy Sylvester Stallone-led Judge Dredd of 1995, the Urban outing has become a forgotten comic book adaptation. But the thing is, people actually liked Dredd and there were once hopes for a movie trilogy.

So, what went wrong?

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Unlike Sly’s film, Travis went with a serious approach. He may have kept gruesome shots of someone’s organs being blasted with a gun whilst Urban spouted ludicrous one-liners you might expect from John McClane, but this was a more mature take on the 2000 AD comic strip.

Dredd ended with Urban’s Judge training Anderson (Olivia Thirlby) as his young protégé, with a sly smile from beneath the helmet proving that this old war dog had mellowed during the film’s events.

Everything was set for a sequel, with writer Alex Garland revealing at the movie’s first screening that he’d planned out a trilogy if it made over $50 million at the North American box office. Unfortunately, Dredd scraped by with just $41.5 million.

In the latest edition of our free digital magazine The Lowdown, we take a look at the uncertain future of Dredd, the plans for the sequel that never happened, arguing it’s time for the Judge to return.

Read the full feature here.

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Tom Chapman

Tom Chapman

Contributing Writer

Tom Chapman is a Manchester-based writer with square eyes and the love of a good pun. Raised on a diet of Jurassic Park and Jumanji, this '90s boy had VHS movies flowing in his blood from a young age. These days, he's addicted to all things Watchmen, Game of Thrones, and The Mandalorian, while reading up on what the X-Men are doing and imagining a life in Gotham City. Having previously worked at What Culture, Movie Pilot, and Screen Rant, Tom is now finding his way at Zavvi, Digital Spy, Radio Times, and Comic Book Resources. No topic is too big or too small for this freelance writer by day, crime-fighting vigilante by night