The idea that reboots are inherently a bad idea was turned on its head back in 2012, when Dredd resurrected the cinematic career of the popular cult comic book series, Judge Dredd. At least, among the audiences the movie actually reached. Despite a dismal box office take for the Karl Urban (Star Trek Beyond) led film, its fans have been loud and vocal about their desires to see another go ‘round Mega City One and the further adventures of the titular anti-hero.
Fans haven’t been alone in the expression of their wants in this regard. Urban himself has been quite open about his willingness to return to the role, largely spearheading an unofficial campaign to find funding for a sequel to the film, an uphill battle considering Dredd’s $35 million box office take. Still, earlier this year the actor suggested that Dredd would be right at home as a series on a streaming service like Netflix or Amazon, which gave hopes to fans that something, anything, might finally be happening. Those hopes, it seems, have now been dashed. At least for now.
In a statement released to Latino Review, Dredd producer Adi Shankar (The Punisher: Dirty Laundry) officially put an end to speculation that something was in the works regarding either a cinematic sequel or TV adaptation for the film. The statement was short and to the point, effectively ruining any chances fans would see more of Judge Dredd at any point in the near future. On the development of the project, the producer said, simply,
“Not true at all bud…unfortunately :(“
This statement comes hot on the heels of Urban’s denial that plans were currently underway for Dredd 2, following rumors that swirled after the actor’s appearance at Denver Comic Con 2016. Prior to Shankar’s statement, Urban tweeted out his own clarification of the rumors:
Dredd update : Unfortunately a sequel is no closer to happening , options have been discussed but there is no sequel in " development " .
— Karl Urban (@KarlUrban) June 22, 2016
The announcement that a sequel to Dredd is now officially off the table will certainly be a blow to fans, who’ve catapulted the film to cult status since it hit the home video market. The large—and still growing—fan base for the film may have been appealing, but it takes a lot to overcome a box office failure of Dredd's magnitude; and studios are, unfortunately, somewhat valid in their concerns about the financial viability of the project.
As far as who’s at fault for Dredd’s failure, there’s plenty of blame to go around. Most obvious is that, for many moviegoers, the film brought with it the baggage of the campy Sylvester Stallone Judge Dredd from the '90s. Urban, however, thinks much of the blame is the responsibility of the film’s marketing. Earlier this year, the actor stated that,
“The movie itself was not a failure, in fact it was a critical success, it just failed to perform at the box office. How does a movie with a 78% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes fail? Through zero audience awareness. Nobody knew the movie was being released. Dredd represents a failure in marketing, not filmmaking. Dredd sold 750,000 units, in North America, the first week it went on DVD, which earned it a lot of money and the number one slot. Proof that the audience, once they became aware, wanted to see it.”
While true, the damage may already be done, tainting the project for Hollywood executives who care, first and foremost, about box office returns. Still, it’s worth noting that Shankar and Urban are still up for more Judge Dredd, and should the right script come along, it’s possible that Dredd 2 could one day be resurrected.
We'll continue to bring you updated on the future of the Dredd franchise as they become available.
Source: Latino Review
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