We’re used to living in a world where adaptations of comic books are some of the biggest movies that come out in any given year (Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy recently topped $568 million world wide and is currently the highest grossing domestic movie of 2014). Pete Travis’ Dredd, however, was a complete and utter failure at the box office when it was released in September 2012. Despite only bringing in $35 million worldwide, it found a second life on home video, breaking sales records, and fans (including most of us here at GFR) have been clamoring for a sequel ever since. Even with a tidal wave of popular grass roots support, it’s doubtful that this is ever going to materialize, but that’s never stopped star Karl Urban from talking about it. And he recently said if we do see another addition to the franchise, it will likely be a prequel or an origin story, rather than a straight sequel.
Talking at Chicago Comic-Con the other day, the subject of another Dredd movie came up, or maybe Urban brought it up, as he seems to do on his own with regularity. When the topic appeared, he said, “Why yes, there is a definite possibility. But, it is more likely that we will do the origins story with Dredd trekking through the cursed earth to find the first Chief Judge Fargo.”
That’s an interesting idea, for sure. John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra’s comic first appeared in British periodical 2000 A.D., and fans will know that in the original Judge Dredd, Fargo was the Chief Judge, who Dredd was cloned from. If you remember Sylvester Stallone’s 1995 adaptation, Max Von Sydow played Fargo, though he was more of a father figure than literal progenitor of the line that includes Dredd and others.
At the end of their days, the Judges take the “long walk” into the Curse Earth, which is the scorched remains, blasted by nuclear war, outside of the walls of the handful of Mega Cities. This is a lawless frontier, full of outlaws, criminals that have been banished or fled, and mutants. A setting like this could also make a cool backdrop for a kind of futuristic western tale, where Dredd’s brand of justice—which, let’s face it, is a kind of a frontier, shoot-first-ask-questions-later style anyway—might be a perfect fit.
If a Dredd 2 happens, and if it’s a prequel, that would mean that Olivia Thirlby’s Judge Cassandra Anderson won’t turn up. She’s a rookie in Dredd after all, so it doesn’t seem like the stone-faced Judge would have hear psychic abilities to lean on when the shit gets hairy, and you know it’s going to.
Since this is probably never going to happen, all we have is speculation, and where’s the harm in that? Would you like to see Judge Dredd take to the Cursed Earth and battle some mutants and post-apocalyptic gunslingers while he searches for the man who is essentially his father? Would you even like to see another film happen, or should they just leave well enough alone? Sound off in the comments below.