Karl Urban as Judge Dredd in 2012's Dredd
Karl Urban as Judge Dredd in 2012’s Dredd

The famous lawman of Mega-City One could be coming back to a small screen near you! According to Rebellion (the company that owns rights to Judge Dredd), a Mega-City One / Judge Dredd television series is written and ready to start production. That’s awesome news for Dredd fans!

“I want there to be a sequel to the 2012 movie Dredd. We’ve got the rights back so we can do it, we’ve just got to get rid of this virus thing that’s going on at the moment, and then hopefully things can kick off in all sorts of different areas of making film and TV, it’s just, it’s all very messed up at the moment for everybody. A lot of work has been done on all sorts of different scripts actually. So Mega-City One the TV show – Basically, we can’t go into production because of the situation (Covid-19) and we’ve got scripts and everything is ready to go but the problem is, because of the situation and everybody’s funding changes and everybody’s shifting around.”

Rebellion CEO Jason Kingsley
Rebellion CEO Jason Kingsley
Rebellion CEO Jason Kingsley

Judge Dredd has had two runs at the box office. The first one in 1995 starred Sylvester Stallone and the second in 2012 had Karl Urban in the role of Judge Joseph Dredd, who rivals The Mandalorian in keeping-their-helmet-on neurotica. Dredd never removes his helmet. This is the way.

Who is Judge Dredd?

2000AD statue
Judge Dredd 2000AD statue by Pop Culture Shock Collectibles

The origin of Dredd belongs to a long-running British comic strip from 1977 called 2000 AD. Set in the year 2099, Dredd is a street judge in post-apocalyptic Mega-City One, where robotic advances have rendered most of the cities inhabitants unemployed and prone to crime. Street judges are the police and the proverbial judge, jury and summary executioner of every-day criminals. There is a long list of colorful characters Dredd has to deal with, and that makes a deep well of stories to be told from this desperate gaggle of humanity.

Judge Dredd: The Cursed Earth
Judge Dredd: The Cursed Earth

The character of Dredd instantly became a fan-favorite and in 1983 got his own comic series in the U.S., simply titled Judge Dredd. American markets were not as receptive to the character, despite writers the likes of comic giants Mark Millar, Grant Morrison and Garth Ennis. Dredd has several comic runs of his own, and multiple graphic novel crossovers with DC’s Batman and Dark Horse’s Aliens. Even with mixed fan reaction over the years, Judge Dredd has gained a following that strongly supports making a sequel to the 2012 movie. Now we may have that with this new TV series.

What would a Judge Dredd TV Series Be Like?

The title floated by Rebellion’s CEO for the series is Mega-City One, and that could mean a couple things. To start with, the show would obviously be set in Judge Dredd’s time, but the title suggests it won’t focus solely on the character. That could mean we’ll see the futuristic judge system and the crazy inhabitants of Dredd’s world through other known characters, and likely some new ones. Judges Hershey, Anderson, and Fargo are great places to start. Making the scope broader than just one Judge opens the field for some great sci-fi story telling.

Psi-Judge Anderson and Judge Death
Psi-Judge Anderson and Judge Death

What does Karl Urban have to say about it?

CEO Kingsley wants Karl Urban to reprise his 2012 role, and Olivia Thirlby is invited to return as Psi-Judge Anderson. Urban has always expressed an interest in wearing Dredd’s helmet again for a sequel. A new TV show might be a great way for him to do that and still keep on with his other wildly-hot show, The Boys on Amazon Prime. In those same comments, Rebellion has also expressed interest in bringing back Sylvester Stallone in some capacity. It’s unclear how they would reconcile Urban’s version of Dredd with Stallone’s, but both would be welcome to the fans. Urban is on record saying this about returning to the role:

“Listen, I would love to make it (a sequel), I’m on the record saying that a bunch of times… it would just be great to see more Dredd, whether it’s with me or not, it doesn’t matter. I’m a fan of Dredd and there’s so many great stories there. I’d love to see them. And I have no doubt that someday, someone will make it. It’s just a matter of time.”

Karl Urban at C2E2
The Boys season 2
Karl Urban (Butcher) makes Jack Quaid (Hughie) laugh during a panel at Fan Expo Canada. 2019. Image: Steve Rickets/That Hashtag Show

Do you want to see Dredd again?

The eventual streaming home of Mega-City One will make a big difference in how these stories are told. If they tell it right, this will likely be for a mature audience. That means whichever streaming service gets it will need to be alright with over-the-top language and gore. These days, most of them are. If I had a complaint about 1995s Judge Dredd, it would be that it was almost too clean. I liked Stallone’s version, but it felt sanitized. Dredd’s world, while mostly comedic in scope, is also gritty and nasty Blade Runner-type setting. Urban’s 2012 version felt right. If the show is going to be true to the character and his world, it needs to keep that motif.

Mega City One
Mega City One

What say you, Hashtaggers? Would you want to see more Judge Dredd in a sequel or in a TV series? What about bringing back Karl Urban and Sylvester Stallone? One fan commented that the show should center on The Cursed Earth Saga and tease the origin of Judge Death. Personally, I have to agree, but I’d like to see The Robot Wars before that in the first season. Let us know what you think in the comments. As always, stick with That Hashtag Show for all that’s trending in geek pop culture!

Contributing source: Joblo