Karl Urban In Talks To Reprise Role In Judge Dredd: Mega City One

Will Karl Urban return?
Will Karl Urban return? Rebellion Developments

Although it wasn’t exactly a smash hit, 2012’s Dredd remains one of my favorite comic book films to date. Wholly repudiating Stallone’s turn as the Judge from 1993, Karl Urban and screenwriter Alex Garland seemed to prove to studios that there is indeed viable interest in the property as the film performed well above expectations in the home market. This led fans and Urban to petition for a potential sequel. Unfortunately, all prospects seemed to gradually dwindle, that is until, Rebellion announced they had struck a deal to develop the underground comic strip into a live-action television series, titled Judge Dredd: Mega City One.

The pitch: In a dystopian future, we follow a team of Judges in sort of an ensemble crime drama set in the 22nd century. Chris Kingsley and Stuart Ford, who were also involved with the 2012 film, are set to produce the live-action series, spurring hopeful fan speculation regarding the return of Karl Urban as the titular hero.

The team behind Mega City One confirmed that the series will not take place in the same universe as Dredd, though Urban is currently in talks to reprise the role. He had this to say at a panel during Star Trek Las Vegas last weekend:

“I am in discussions with them about that. I told them that if they write the material and give Dredd something to do and give him a function, I will be, I will love to.”

Besides wanting Urban to return merely because, to me, he embodied the role with every bit of conviction and ease as Robert Downey Jr. did Iron Man, Urban is a huge fan of the property so his involvement would signify that the show is on track to be a pretty faithful adaptation of John Wagner’s vision.

IM Global and Rebellion recently dropped concept art for the upcoming show and aesthetically, Mega CIty One steers much closer toward the hellscape depicted in the comics than the grounded one we got in Dredd. Flying cars, spindly highways, that muddy gritty filter – it looks perfect.

Concept art for Mega City One
Concept art for Mega City One Rebellion Developments

Dredd’s under-performance at the box office was undoubtedly a failure in marketing. Everything from the trailer to the ‘fuck you’ September release suggests Lionsgate thought very little of the property and its box office projections. As evident by its cult following and massive DVD and Blu Rays sales, Urban’s turn as the titular character and the risibly morbid sartre that the film endeared absolutely resonated with audiences. Although I’ll retain faith in the production regardless, I really hope they can convince Urban to return.

Judge Dredd: Mega City One is set for a 2018 release.

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