Promoting his sci-fi festival flick, Ex Machina, Dredd screenwriter Alex Garland spoke to IGN about a sequel to the comic adaptation that starred Karl Urban as the title character.
There always seems to be some sort of news regarding a sequel to Lionsgate’s 2012 film, but never anything promising. In fact, Garland goes on to say the project is dead in the water.
“As far as I’m concerned? Yeah it is [dead]. My hope is, and I actually think this will happen – somebody else will do it. Not to be all coy and silly about it, but I think our film was better than the first one, right? Just to be blunt. And the job of the next people is to make their film better than ours. And then if they do that, then finally, maybe this character will break out in the way that it deserves to. But we’ll see.”
Had they continued with a follow, here’s a taste of what might have been…DARK JUDGES!
“The first film we made it for about $35m, although quite a lot of that was to do with shooting it in 3D. Or a chunk of it. And we managed to make that film for that budget by locking it in a building essentially, sort of Die Hard-style. In the second film it was going to go out into the desert, which would be The Cursed Earth – people who know the comic book would know immediately what that means. And maybe throw some money at some key sequences. That’s how you do it I guess. I think we could have made it for another $30m, $35m type thing. We could have made it for $30m if we shot it in 2D. $35m maybe 3D I guess. Of that order. But the third one that would have been more expensive, because it would have been going back to the city and maybe bringing in some Dark Judges or something like that.”
Here’s my favorite part. Garland exclaims that the petitions are a waste of time, something I’ve been telling readers for years. It sucks, but a petition is voting with your dollar. If people wanted to see a Dredd so badly they should have caught it in the theater and picked it up on home video.
“It makes me feel sad really. I feel grateful to the people who’ve attempted to get a sequel off the ground. And sorry that actually what happened was we let them down. Because the reality is that a film needs to acquit itself. It shouldn’t need a petition. And the truth is if it gets to the point where it needs a petition, it’s in big trouble anyway. That’s the cold hard reality of it. I feel a sense of residual guilt. It’s quite strong actually; it’s not that residual. Dredd was a very, very hard movie to work on, for all sorts of different reasons, and the reward would have been at the end of it that it all worked out. But it didn’t all work out. That’s the reality.”