Karl Urban Confimed for a Hard R-Rated 'Judge Dredd' Movie
We first heard the solid rumor during Comic-Con that Karl Urban (Star Trek, Lord of the Rings) might be delivering justice as Judge Dredd, a law enforcement officer of the future given power to act as judge, jury and executioner, in a new take on the sci-fi comic book character. At the Con, outlets like Collider and Film School Rejects heard straight from Urban that he had been offered the role and they were working towards making it official. Well, now Empire has double confirmed his casting and got new details from producers Andrew Macdonald and Allon Reich, who revealed that this will be a very gritty, hard R-rated adaptation.
As if casting Urban in a high profile lead role like this wasn't enough good news, Macdonald and Reich know the film needs to be completely unlike the disastrous adaptation with Sylvester Stallone from the 90s. Here's what Macdonald has to say about their fresh new take on the comic this time:
"The main thing about Dredd is that it'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 we've got to get the tone right. He's not going to take off his helmet. His bike is going to feel real. He's going to hit people and it's going to feel real. There's been a change in comic-book movies; they were treated unseriously and now they're treated seriously. We've cast a guy called Karl Urban to play Dredd. We'll be shooting in Johannesburg, it's being directed by Pete Travis, we're shooting with the people who did 'District 9' – and if we get it right, Alex [Garland] has a couple of ideas for other stories as well. It's not based on any one comic, and [creator] John Wagner is involved in every decision."
Sounds like this is the Judge Dredd adaptation every loyal fan has wanted to see for decades. And if the crew behind District 9 can bring the same amount of realism to this project then I think we'll be in for a very cool sci-fi treat. Interestingly enough, Macdonald's take on comic book movies move into a respectable limelight also parallels the path of comic books themselves to being taken seriously as art and literature. The fact that comic books and their adaptations are treated with so much respect and loved by audiences is really quite an achievement and I'm glad Judge Dredd is the newest project on the path towards more quality adaptations.