Dredd and Dredd 2, 18 months on

Feature Simon Brew 3 Apr 2014 - 07:18

So: the Dredd movie bombed, and Dredd 2 is a no-go, right? Maybe, but maybe not...

Just over 18 months ago, a film that remains very dear to the hearts of many readers of this site got its UK release. Launching on 7th September 2012, Dredd opened against films such as Lawless, Anna Karenina and the Adam Sandler vehicle, That's My Boy. Whilst, deservedly, the Sandler movie wouldn't even crack the top ten in the UK, it was Dredd that prevailed, off the back of encouraging reviews. The memory of the infamous (although not universally hated) 1995 Sylvester Stallone/Danny Cannon attempt to bring Judge Dredd to the screen had apparently been laid to rest.

Dredd opened to £1.05m of business, with its distributor choosing to play it pretty much exclusively in 3D. At the time, that had some initial upside, with the film being the first 18 certificate movie to top the British box office in two years (Saw 3D being the last), although many protested that they would had caught the film at the movies had a 2D option been available.

Sadly, Dredd was hampered by a different problem in the shape of uncharacteristically sunny weather on the weekend it came out. But it still went on to do good business in Britain. It ended its run with nearly £4m banked from its UK cinema release (it was promptly knocked off the top by The Sweeney), a total that got the film off to a good start.

You know the next bit. In pretty much every other territory Dredd opened up, it struggled. The US take of $13m dominated the headlines, but around the world, it was a similar story. Dredd rustled up business in Australia, China and Russia. But these were the exception, as the film struggled pretty much everywhere else. Even though Dredd cost an economical $45m to make, its worldwide box office receipts would amount to just over $40m. Any hope of the mooted Dredd sequels had been dashed.

But then this is when two factors came into play. Factor one: the Dredd movie was and is good to very good, depending on who you talk to. And factor two: a groundswell of fans, led by the excellent Dredd Sequel campaign, was not giving this one up. 18 months later, said campaign is arguably stronger than ever.

As such, Dredd got off to a far stronger start on its DVD and Blu-ray debut. Posting substantive sales in both the US and the UK (it's done nearly $20m in disc sales in the US alone), the Dredd Sequel campaign subsequently co-ordinated a successful day of action almost a year after the film's original cinematic debut. Thus, on September 18th last year, the campaign encouraged people to buy a copy of the film, whether for themselves or for someone else, to try and drive Dredd back up the charts. Up the charts again it promptly went, and even as we write this article, Dredd sits in the top 100 chart at Amazon. Its DVD, Blu-ray, Netflix, in-flight movie and streaming performance might just have got the movie into profit. If that's the case, it's only just.

With all that said, you may be forgiven for thinking, looking back as we are in April 2014, that Judge Dredd's big screen journey is done. 2000AD has now published a sequel to the film in comic book form, and there's no sign whatsoever of a Dredd 2 even at the scripting stage (although just yesterday, a story broke that Alex Garland was set to turn his attention to the project once he's done with his directorial debut, Ex-Machine). Furthermore, there's no evidence either of an R-rated or 18 certificate comic book adaptation heading for a mainstream release anytime soon, with the one olive branch there being a potential low budget take on Deadpool, that Ryan Reynolds remains interested in. As far as we know, no green light has been given there either.

So why write this piece? Is Dredd 2 a dead project? Well, by nearly all logical measures, probably. But unlike many films that fail to recoup their money at the box office, and that bomb on their opening weekend in the States, Dredd still has factors in its corner. The fan campaign for a start has seen 100,000 online signatures amassed for a Dredd 2. And whilst that doesn't get you the $40-odd million you need to make the film, it's a step in the right direction. At least it proves there's support out there, even in the days where an online petition is apparently of limited use.

There's a further advocate for the project too though, in Karl Urban. Urban's performance as Dredd was as selfless as it needed to be, capturing the cold steel of the character in a way that, it would be fair to say, Sylvester Stallone didn't. In fact, just yesterday, Urban recorded a special message acknowledging the fan campaign, and declaring that "on behalf of everybody involved with the film Dredd, from Alex Garland to the DNA boys to myself, we really appreciate it and we're working hard to bring you Dredd 2". That in itself is something: the creative team are still - despite many setbacks - keen to get a new Dredd moving. Here's Urban's video...

So how will they do it? Not easily, and this is the stumbling block. Attracting new or existing investors off the back of the performance of the last film - no matter how impressive the DVD numbers - is a major challenge. Furthermore, whilst the budget could be kept low for Dredd by confining it mainly to one location, that surely couldn't be the plan for Dredd 2. Something more expansive, and inevitably more expensive, is likely to be required.

Crowdfunding has all but been dismissed as an option for Dredd 2 already. The wildly successful crowdfunding campaign for the Veronica Mars movie still garnered just under $6m, and that's a fraction of what'd be required for a new Dredd movie. On the surface too, it's hard to see Lionsgate having appetite to buy rights to or invest too much in a new movie. That said, rumours now suggest that the studio hasn't ruled it out. It's also worth noting that with Dredd performing in just a handful of territories, pre-sales aren't likely to be too clever.

What Dredd 2 needs is what Dredd really needed. On the one hand, a bunch of passionate people, keen to make the film. That much it has. On the other, it needs a fanbase that'll continue to make noise about Dredd 2. It has that too, although more recruits are very much still needed. A lot more recruits, in truth. And then crucially, it also needs enough investors for DNA Films to press ahead with the movie. That remains the huge, huge stumbling block, and only prolonged noise from fans seems likely to affect that in any way. The quest for Dredd 2 may take many years.

All this said, we're still realistic: it seems more likely that Dredd 2 won't happen, and the odds are considerably stacked against it. And yet, 18 months after the film apparently flopped without trace, here we are still talking about it. Karl Urban is still fighting for it, a growing fanbase is still pushing for it, and one of the best organised fan campaigns in recent times is refusing to throw in the towel. If the Dredd movie saga is going to go down, it very much won't be for the want of trying...

Find the online petition here if you want to add your name, and the Dredd Sequel Facebook page is here.

Additional picture credit: the excellent fan-film, Judge Dredd: Cursed Earth. Details on that here.

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A short correction; the production budget for 'Dredd' was $35m according to Alex Garland not any other figure you might have read, this means it has a lower bar to cross to breaking even or going into profit, and if ancillary sales continue at the rate they've been going since last year, it must be close to making money by now if not already crossed that line, hence why serious-albeit-preliminary discussions on a potential sequel have clearly started in earnest.

I would LOVE a sequel to 'Dredd', I can think of no recent film more deserving of one, plus any old excuse to get Olivia Thirlby back into the tight leathers... oops, did I just think that or say it loud...?

I'll get me coat.

The movie itself may have cost $35 million, but the $45 million figure may include the likes of marketing. Not that this makes either number incorrect, it's just that studios often (usually) include marketing costs in the "production" budget. This, among other things, is why it can be so difficult to actually figure out if a movie is a flop or not from a purely financial perspective. Many movies deemed financial disasters actually still made money for the studios involved due to the kinks in their accounting styles.

One of the most satisfying comic book films ever made and one that to me seems fiercely loyal to the character, it needs a sequel, Urban nailed it and its a film I can watch again and again!

Added to that I seem to recall reading somewhere $5-10m of that budget was on the visual effects having to be done twice for the 3D.

"Something more expansive, and inevitably more expansive, is likely to be required."
Not to be cheap and point out typos...

Great article!
I really hope Dredd gets a sequel, its one of the best Sci-Fi/Action movies in the last 20 years and one of the very few films that actually deserves a follow up! :-)

It’s also possible that the film failed because it wasn’t good, and wasn’t loyal to the character?
While any film will have its ardent fans, isn’t it still possible that this picture died the death it deserved becuase while it filled its niche perfectly, that niche wasn’t a big one?
There are surely more people out there who didn’t like the film, and thought it missed the essentials of good Dredd (that it should be a satire of the Police State, in a bold brash post-punk black comedy, and *not* the blood spattered tale of a psycho, which is what it set out to satirize (it should send up Dirty Harry, and not pander to that type of macho posturing cop)), than the reviewer suggests.
A typical example of a missed moment was one of the bits in which the baddies opened fire at Dredd, and civilians were taken out in the cross-fire. *Real* Dredd would have had him cite the casualties for impeding an officer in the pursuit of his duties - instead they just seemed to be there to gout blood on screen in celebration of the destruction.

It could have been like the original “RoboCop” or “Starship Troopers”, and wasn’t…

When the original film came out, I was less than enthused. It was on the back of the usual super hero filled summer schedule, and didn't seem to offer anything new. The film looked low budget compared to the other summer blockbusters, and the lacklustre marketing campaign really didn't sell itself to me at all.

If Dredd 2 was greenlit, I would be there, day 1, Imax ticket in hand, and I suspect there are a LOT of people like me. I don't think Lionsgate realise just how much money they would make from a sequel

I loved the movie. I was one of those who waited for its disc release as, for me, 3D does nothing to increase my viewing pleasure and there were no 2D screenings anywhere hear me. Most of the time 3D is an annoyance and distracts me from really losing myself in the story. Its just an excuse to bump up sales prices. Long live 2D!

Wicked movie! Went to the cinema twice and downloaded a copy from iTunes. Sadly, we are here having this discussion because the world is full of Justin Bieber's!! They never made an effort to support something that deserved BOX OFFICE SUCCESS. I walked out of that cinema thinking - CAN'T WAIT TO SEE #2. Do they deserve the sequel?

I reckon Dredd 2 would make at least $100 million, word of mouth after the DVD release has been extremely strong.
I'd love a sequel, I really enjoyed everything about the first one.

Saw it on the big screen, got it on Netflix, bought it on disc anyway, signed the petition.

It took the better part of thirty years of great home entertainment sales of The Thing before they greenlit a new entry, let's not wait that long for Dredd.

Didn't get a chance to see it in the Cinema because, y'know Life. but I watched it on Netflix recently and I really enjoyed it. A sequel would be good so we could explore Dredds universe in greater detail. The Comics are slightly from before my time, would anyone recommend me starting to read 2000AD? Which era should I start with? Should I get the recent releases or Should I maybe get an anthology from the 80s?

Part of the flop was also a too similar premise to the thai action flick 'The Raid' ... now THAT was a hit. Apparently pure coincidence but nevertheless some of the scenes were very similar.

Showing it in 3D only, pretty much everywhere in the Uk and having a 18cert possible went against this film getting a good return at the box office. I admit. I thought the 3D was really good, one of the very few films I've watched in 3D, where the 3D really adds to the film, but to be honest it wasn't really needed. I really hope we see a Dredd 2 and little less sexual content might get it down to a 15, increasing its audience and box office returns.

Buy Judge Dredd Case files Vol 5 & 2. Good starting point.

Regardless of budget, Dredd made $41 million globally, The Raid made $15 million. More people saw Dredd. There wasn't much of an audience crossover between the films.

15 certificate, no thanks

Not a coincidence, The Raid copied Dredd

Proof please.

Marketing? There was marketing for Dredd? Really? Could've sworn that there practically was none outside the UK.

Shhhhhhhh! Don't mention The Thing sequel!!!! That will kill the idea of Dredd 2 stone dead.

Gotta say though, the 3D was pretty well handled in this - particulaly the Slo-Mo scenes.
But yes, there should have been many more 2D showings as well.

'they'd have', not 'they've had' :)

Would love to see a sequel and for it to do better business than the first.

As someone who has seen a lot of movies in both formats, I can ho estly say yhe "just a gimmick" thing is often nonsense. Sure, there is often no real advantage to it and it could be argued that there is never a need, as such, but it often actually does add something. Action movies and CGI movies, especially benefit from the depth 3D creates.

Of course, I'm not saying that your dislike of 3D is wrong. That's your opinion and you are entitled to it, but to say that 3D is only an excuse to charge more is not always true.

The lack of it may explain why there's only $10 million difference in the numbers quoted. Studios spend a stupid amount on shoving their films in people's faces.

Both were in production at the same time on opposite sides of the world.
They make a superb double-billing.

seriously? haha

I was really impressed with the 3D aswell, just as you say the slo-mo effects were truly excellent. It's not often I watch 3D and think that added something but in this case it did

I didn't see it in the cinema because I can't see 3D films properly due to bad astigmatism in one eye. It was frustrating as I knew I'd love it.

When it finally came out on Blu Ray I was right. It was awesome. Felt robbed of the chance to see it in the cinema :(

I think it was a wise move for the movie to tone down the more outlandish elements of Mega City One, because the way everything was presented made the vision of the future seem disturbingly believable for audiences unfamiliar with the comic. Now that the setting is established they have more freedom to explore some more bizarre things in potential sequels.

If anyone ever read the awesome Judgement in Gotham Dredd Batman crossover, they will see what the sequel should have been!
Death and Scarecrow against Batman and Dredd is so much better than Superman

Any 2000AD start is a good start

Bring on part 2

Karl Urban was so good in the role it's annoying that there has been no sequel. It was one of the greatest of all comic book films for me.

Saw it twice at the cinema, bringing my reluctant wife and best mate in turn each time. I loved it. The characterisation and portrayal by Urban nailed the character. I thought it was as faithful to the source material as could be and hopefully banished the ghosts of the God-awful Stallone attempt. That being said, the marketing campaign was almost non-existent outside the UK from all accounts. Raid2 is already out and any number of terrible films have sequels. I'm hopeful...

And The Raid cost $1million to make, which means it made a massive profit.

The idea to release it with a limited number of 2D screenings was a disastrous one. It certainly put me off spending the extra money to see it. When I did see it I thought it was fine, but nothing special.

Before it was released, Alex Garland was talking about a trilogy (sigh), and his plans certainly involved expanding the Dredd universe, so a sequel would have to be significantly more expensive.

I'd love a sequel to this, and to keep costs down, why not the Cursed Earth story saga. It's just a desert shoot, a few explosions and some mutants. My favourite film of 2012.

While there wasn't much audience crossover because the Raid came first and was a surprise, it meant that a lot of the reviews of Dredd referenced the Raid and how similar they were...which I don't think helped. It never looks good to be second!

No. You're way off. There are the DVD and Blu-ray sale that attest to the fact. At this moment, just about everybody who's seen the movie, wants a sequel. You're in the minority here. There are a lot more people who liked or loved the movie, than there are people who saw the movie and hated it. There was some horrid marketing, only 3D copies available, a limited release. People didn't know the movie existed, or associated it with the Stallone movie. Which was a bad thing, either way. People who hated the previous movie, weren't going to watch another one. People who had fond memories of it, weren't going to watch some other actor playing the role, thinking this was just a tired remake. And there were those that saw the movie, and wanted to bring their friends along for the next weekend, but weren't able to, because it was not showing anymore. But hey, please Google "Amazon March Movie Bracket Dredd" and see for yourself. You'd be surprised.

Just start buying 2000ad, and invest in some of the Dredd case files collections. The early ones are great value for money as the black and white days of Dredd are cheap to reproduce. Plus 2000ad has much more going for it than just Dredd, some of my favourite stories of all time came out of that comic (Halo Jones, Harry on the High Rock)

i am sad to say that I originally avoided Dredd purely based on it "bombing" at the cinemas. once I had heard that I kind of turned off the idea of watching it. pure word of mouth then brought it back to my attention last year and I loved it. superb film. long live Dredd!!!

Ma-MA's Requiem, the song that played in the background on Ma-Ma's death scene, was inspired by a Justin Bieber song. A slowed down Justin Bieber song, but still... All hail Justin Bieber, our Dark Lord and the Source Of All Evil!

I loved Dredd, saw it at the Cinema, brought it on Blu-Ray and on iTunes. and I would love nothing more than to see a couple of sequels.

I do have some minor quibbles with it though. First of all Mega City One didn't feel right, the Mega Blocks seemed to far apart which removes the chance of Block Wars... Second, I never felt like MaMa was a threat, yes she hid behind a gang but I would have liked to have seen her being more dangerous... plus it would have been nice to maybe have had Mean Machine as a hired goon. Lastly I was not a fan of the look of his Bike... that looked really cheap and naff

Because it's performing way better than expected on DVD and Blu-ray, and people really want a sequel. Even people who half-reluctantly watched it on Netflix. And people will be there for the sequel, to see it on day one!

So none then.

A leaked script and similarities are not 'proof'. There are also many differences between them but no one likes to focus on them because they don't suit the conclusion they want.

Most of the cinema going audience never heard of or saw The Raid and I'd say 10% are actually affected by reviews.

This would have taken far more at the box office had the distributors released a 2D version to cinemas. That, and the half-arsed promotion of the film well and truly hamstrung it, which is a real shame, as it's a cracking watch.

Even my wife, who doesn't normally like comic book movies, loved it, so it must have something going for it!

I know, which is why said regardless of budget, Dredd had a bigger audience and had the bigger box-office. The effect The Raid had was exaggerated, most people don't see subtitled films with martial arts.

No. I don't think it was a co-incidence. The writer/director of Raid is a Welshman, born in UK, living in Indonesia. The screenplay for Dredd leaked on the internet July 2010. It was kind of a big thing for many fans of the Judge Dredd comics, most of them living in UK. Gareth Evans had to cancel his movie Berandal, because of a high budget. Instead he wrote Raid, because it was cheaper to make, and rewrote Berandal as a sequel to it. Having read the Dredd script, then much later, watching Raid, it seemed kind of... familiar :D

And yet The Raid is a significantly better film.

Production budgets don't include marketing but they can be exaggerated. The minimum marketing spend for a nationwide release in the US alone is $20 million, you can add another $20 million internationally. Dredd was marketed in the US, it just didn't hit the mark for a variety of reasons. Dredd's worldwide marketing budget probably cost more than the film, this is not an unusual occurrence.

Even accounting for DVD sales, it hasn't made a significant profit. A sequel would need a bigger budget, meaning a much bigger audience would be needed to make it a success. 100,000 people on the internet isn't going to cut it.

I was gutted that i couldn't see it in 3D at the cinema. I was sooooooo looking forward to seeing it, but i have to wear prescription specs. I can't watch 3D, as the 3D ones over mine give me blinding headaches! If there had been a decent selection of 2D screenings i'd have been there! :( I did but the blu-ray though and hugely enjoyed it.

The Raid is certainly better directed but Dredd is good for different reasons.

There are no numbers for international sales only US (18 million) and UK ($8 million); if that upward trend continued worldwide, Dredd made more in sales than box-office; an unusual occurrence.

Saw it at the cinema, bored everyone telling them how good it was and bought it on bluray as soon as it became available which was a while because HMV, Morrisons, Asda, WH Smiths constantly sold out. It's become one of my favourite movies and I would love to see a sequel.

Still holding out hope!

I'd argue with you if they weren't covered by the critics. Take websites like Den of Geek, both covered the movie - and if you go back I'm sure they mentioned the similarities in their articles. While I'm sure this didn't kill the Dredd audience it will have had some effect. I remember that Kermode mentions The Raid in his review of Dredd with the Raid being seen as more favourable as it came first.

The Raid was one of many factors that didn't result in Dredd getting the audience it deserved.

I think the real point of the home sales is their indication that the lack of interested viewers Dredd suffered at the cinema is a problem of the past. There's a very strong argument to be made that the low boxoffice takings were due to things like people assuming it was 'just another shitty remake' of an already shitty Stallone movie, and that the success via home media indicates that a large number of people have realised that that isn't the case.

It didn't stop Dredd being number 1 in the UK and if The Raid hadn't been released Dredd still wouldn't have made enough money. The effect was more academic than financial.

The bad reputation created by the Stallone film was the bigger factor at play. For a valid reason, remakes/reboots of films or characters that have previously flopped and NEVER been successful rarely happen. I think The Punisher might be the only other and that tells a similar story.

I don't know how you can claim that as a fact. What percentage of home media sales are from people who didn't see it in the cinema?

The Stallone film was so long ago, and so forgettable, that blaming its existence for Dredd's failure is just a lazy excuse.

It remains a film that didn't make a big enough profit to justify a sequel that would need a bigger budget and a much bigger audience to make a profit.

"For a valid reason, no one remakes/reboots films or characters that have previously flopped and NEVER been successful."

Ocean's Eleven, 3:10 to Yuma, Man Who Knew Too Much, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Les Mis, Maltese Falcon are just a few. That of course ignores reboots of series where the same story is re-told

I do think that 3D technology can produce some beautiful looking shots. An example of this for me would be a shot of Gandalf in The Hobbit 2: The detail and panning of his face was quite mesmerising. As an art form, if done 'properly' it does hold some weight to its images. For me I just don't appreciate the compass of a movie any more in 3D than I already would in 2D.

The blatant bolt-on is where I was mainly coming from in terms of profit making. I missed the opportunity to see Gravity in 3D and wish I had after watching it in 2D as I feel it would have been quite the 3D exposition piece.

I have to say I feel sightly differently towards how 3D benefits action sequences. I find it difficult to concentrate on specific aspects of a scene, especially when there are many fast moving objects/characters zipping around all over the screen. In the new Spiderman I kept getting distracted by the flickering when he is travelling between buildings and such. Took me out that suspension of disbelief mindset to think oh yeah, I'm watching a movie in 3D, and its flickering. I experienced it similarly with Avengers.

As the technology improves I'm sure these problems will be fixed, though for me, 3D is a tool more focused on aesthetics than storytelling.

No, because the majority of people who did go to see it enjoyed it, by all accounts. The problem was getting them into the screen in the first place. A mixture of poor marketing and the hangover of the Stallone movie - there were plenty who thought this was a remake or sequel to that.

The original 'Body Snatchers' (1956) made nearly 10 times its budget so unlike Dredd had initial success.

The 1978 version was also a hit.

The original 'The Man Who Knew Too Much' (1934) was an enormous success in Britain and was Hitchcock's first hit after several flops.

Les Mis- pick which one out of the dozen or so adaptations. It's also a classic text.

The Maltese Falcon (like the aforementioned The Punisher) is a rare exception.

"That of course ignores reboots of series where the same story is re-told"

That's too vague. The context is 'first time flops getting remade'. Dredd is a specific type of film existing in a certain era in which branding has become paramountand the occurrence of reboots of first-time flops rarely happens. It rarely happens for a reason.

How many first-time cinema flops have been rebooted in the last 30 years?

I skipped this at cinema (can't deal with the unpredictable theatre asshole factor) but have long been a fan of the IP and have since purchased DREDD on Blu-ray, something that I don't do much of these days. A sequel by the same creative team would be fantastic.

I don't think it was the sex which got it an 18. There's no way that a decent Dredd film could be less than an 18. Heavy violence and gore are staples of the original property.
I didn't see it at the cinema, since I don't go to the cinema (people cooties) but I got it on DVD when it launched, and then got the Blu-Ray for the 3D version. The film is, quite simply, excellent, and was deserving of a better release than the hamstringing it got. If anyone deserves nailing to a wall for Dredd's performance, it's the marketing people and the thyroidally challenged studio execs who pushed 3D only.

There's one simple reason I waited until the DVD/BD release (I bought the BD pretty much the day it came out),... 3D.

Had they not released it in 3D only, it'd have been my first choice instead of backup choice for cinema viewing. And then it didn't stay in the cinema long enough for me to get through whatever films that weren't 3D only.

3D really needs to die now.

I'm pretty certain I read it had only the bare minimum or marketing, both in the UK and elsewhere. There's no way they spent $20m on marketing, not even convinced they spent $20...

3D's problem is that when it doesn't work, it takes you out of the film.

When it does work, it either takes you out of the film (because instead of going 'wow, that looks beautiful', you just think 'wow, it's amazing what technology can do these days'), or you stop noticing it after 5 minutes. It's a colossal waste of money.

Also, the light loss, which means detail loss (and sometimes, Harry Potter 7 part 2, it's virtually impossible to see what's going on), uncomfortable glasses (especially for long films) and *even* *more* *expensive* tickets for something I didn't even want.

You don't seem that certain.

Lionsgate's minimum spend in the US on their films is $20 million. It's an industry standard known as the 'Lionsgate $20 million'.

From the biggest industry website, Deadline, there's a reference to IMGLOBAL's marketing spend (IMGLOBAL paid for Lionsgate's US marketing):

"The bad news is that Deepak Nayer and Stuart Ford who put the picture together committed Reliance Entertainment to fund the $40M gap and backstop the P&A*. The good news for Lionsgate is that it has minimalrisk. LG’s marketing campaign created a comic strip prequel to the film with the publisher 2000 AD as well as a Motion Comic released online."

*That's $40 million for Prints & Advertising.

I watched The Raid. Does that count?

Only in that the The Raid script wasn't even a twinkle when the Dredd script was locked down. So no. No it doesn't count.

A great movie. Part of the reason I feel for its failure was the difficulty in finding 2D screenings & the pathetic marketing campaign. If people don't know a movie is coming out, if enough hype isn't created then no one will see it!

Ever notice how detractors of Dredd and The Thing didn't see either at the time of release because they thought it was a sequel or remake? And how they bemoaned the use of cgi in the latter despite it looking fine on the big screen?

Damn shame that.

I get what you mean about the mega blocks being too far apart, since that is what I thought when I first saw the movie. But after a few viewings, I've realized that the reason it doesn't feel claustrophobic is a trick of scale. Next time you watch it, focus on the buildings between the blocks and you will realize that they are the same as current modern skyscrapers. Which means that the mega blocks are way bigger than they seem at first glance. Then look at the long distance shot of MC1 and you will see that there are dozens and dozens of megablocks stretching out into the distance. MC1 suddenly looks way bigger than anything else we've seen on screen since Coruscant - and that was too shiny - only this is way dirtier and polluted, and mostly made of aging concrete.

Hope you do an exception to the rule, despite the obvious downsides of seeing a movie in a theater :-) I'm not saying one person sticking to just buying it for a home media is going to change much, but butts on seats are what's going to make or break the changes of more entries. If more people had seen Dredd in the theater, they would be filming the sequel right now. But if you choose not to, that's fine. Buying the Blu-ray is a great way to support the movie too. I'm going to see Dredd 2 as many times as I possibly can and drag my friends along. Kicking and screaming, if I have to ;-) That will balance.things out, in the cosmic scale :D

Good try, but it's still 'would have', not 'would had' :p

Well it clear to everyone that the creative team are firmly behind this project but it will probably take them putting putting their own money into the film to get it made.

Surely you would have to set the story up in the city first?

Not really, Watchman did good business an that was 18.

It a shame Dredd wasn't successful, 2000ad have some great properties that would look good on screen.

Exactly, it a risk but positive views, heavy airing on Dredd on TV , could expand the market massively.

What a film that made a profit, send the figures back to the accountants again, they obviously made an error ;)

The Raid is certainly not "significantly" better as you put it. The Raid became tedious at about the 10th fight sequence, some dragging on and on and on. Dredd is a much tighter, and much more subtle and thought provoking film than The Raid could ever be.

I loved Dredd!

Watched it again last weekend. It's frigging great.

Dredd is 'thought provoking'? By all means defend it, but calling a sci-fi action film like Dredd thought provoking is ridiculous.

let's not get carried away, it was a decent film with some amazing visuals, could have been a lot better with an improved script and less needless gore, the decision to force people to watch in 3d was a bad mis-step

It's a shame, but I have to agree with the article, movies like this need a backer and backers want return, they seem unable to trust that these days that return is more than just box office, films like these will do far better on what was dvd release but now has a far wider format, with a far wider return. PS: I liked the movie, throught it captured the comic pretty well.

It's hardly ridiculous. What's ridiculous is your failure to comprehend that Dredd, to the uninitiated, can be thought provoking. The establishment he represents and the environment he does his job in from day to day, and this film was just an average day on the job for him. So the idea of a not too distant dystopian city that is based on our own real world locations that evolved due to past and current scenarios that could actually happen isn't thought provoking? The fact that regimes have and do indeed exist today that parallel the ethos that the Judges have been founded on, and that Dredd himself, a man that doesn't reveal his face, represents what could be fascism in it's faceless form? There was a lot of subtly to the film. Something that was obviously lost on you.

This is true. I read somewhere that studios consider a movie to be successful if it makes back double its budget back, so although as you say, it can be difficult to asses whether a film is successful or not I reckon it would probably need to make $90 million for it to be considered successful.

True it did, but Watchman (I found tad boring) has larger following maybe? I know in the Uk any thing with violent sexual reference's is going to get an 18 straight away. I didn't think the violence was that bad in Dredd. I thought 300 had just as much violence and gore but that still got a 15.

Maybe in an alternate universe.

If I win the Euro lottery, I'll pay for this sequel myself.

I think is more the fact it had a good marketing budget and Zyger has manage to build a fan base.

This. The high rises were essentially ghettos of the empoverished and it was refreshing how the came up with the idea for the drug, not some futuristic drug which makes you create your own fantasy world or gives you temporary superpowers. I loved Dredd, came at it neutral but walked away loving it. Here here to a sequel!

It felt like watching someone else play a videogame for the most part.

The plot was minimal at best, reminded me of some of the bad 80s/90s action flicks.

What Dredd 2 needs and will get is a budget three times its original size in order to bring the look up to the Mega City standards that the first movie boasted. Hell, they kept doing it with The Crow, why not Dredd? Secondly, it needs a major marketing campaign like that for The Dark Knight, especially with that movie's cost effective viral campaign. Finally, squeaking by on a tiny budget will kill this franchise dead. The director of The Raid 1 and 2 should immediately be called in, he's a 2000AD fan for sure and he would attract bigger investors.

It was an average to good movie which isn't really deserving of the devoted fanbase it has. A much better storyline would be needed if a sequel was ever given the green light.

If M. Night Shyamalan was able to secure a budget after The Last Airbender then they should easily be able to acquire a budget for the one of the most bad-ass action flicks of recent times.

100,000? Do you really think it's just those (over) 100,000 fans that are going to see the sequel in a theater? The names on the petition only means that those 100,000 fans are so dedicated, they'll even go the extra mile for the movie, even sign a petition for it. Or watch the movie more than once.

That's actually a very clear indication of tremendous interest towards the movie. It has sold 1,000,000 on DVD&Blu-ray on US alone! n the country, where it "failed".

And the word of mouth on Dredd is so good, that more and more people have seen it, and will see it, many of them becoming fans. The way the movie was made, it leaves you wanting more. I hear and read it everywhere.

Stop thinking how much profit the movie made in the box office, after the bad marketing and limited release it got. Many people have commented they wanted to see it, but it was gone before they had to change to see it. Or if people did see it, it wasn't there for the next weekend, when they wanted to bring their friends with them. How much profit the first one actually made is not the only relevant factor here. You have to think of the potential of the sequel, how large the fanbase is and how dedicated. Very dedicated, very large, internationally, the total opposite of the situation in 2012.

If you don't think of Dredd as the movie that will fully finance the next movie, but think of it as a feature-lenght equivalent of a trailer for the next movie, that took a lot of money to make, but managed to make some profit, while making a tremendous anticipation for the next installment, the situation looks much more positive.

Look at the bigger picture: with all this hype, this much anticipation, the movie and the fan movement making headlines and people everywhere telling others how good the movie was, how can the sequel possibly fail? Only one way. They make a very bad sequel that people will vocally hate after seeing in the first weekend, but even then, it would have managed to sell a lot of tickets. I Can't think of
any other reason it could fail. I don't think that's going to happen.

Also, even the producers have now admitted they made some serious blunders in the marketing of the movie.

I agree. I actually wished the movie had been somewhere between Judge Dredd and the new movie, Dredd. But they still made all the right decisions in making the film (although not in the marketing). Maybe some more Robocop type satire (remember those commercials? Judge Dredd comics had done these for years) could have been nice, but still. This version did the character justice, while grounding him in an almost believable reality. It was this movie which also made the Average Joe understand the character and want more movies. So I'm more than OK with all the decisions they made.

I'm afraid I'm going to have to use the "R" word in reference to an element missing from your otherwise excellent article. At the end of the day after going to see Dredd (begrudgingly in 3D) it's hard not to recommend your friends to "just go see The Raid instead". I think this almost duplicate story (yet done much better) hampered the success of Dredd. I grew up reading 2000AD and I'm even a Stallone apologist, but this also makes me part of the same niche demographic that will also have seen The Raid. Dredd really needed good word of mouth, and this competing and superior film hindered that.

If I recall correctly, RoboCop evolved from a script that was originally supposed to be for an adaptation of Judge Dredd. That would explain the satirical portrayal of future Detroit and could be seen as a modified origin to the rise o the judges.

For a potential sequel to Dredd they could add some of the truly disturbing body-modification fads seen in the comic, presented as a twisted parody of our current fads of increasingly elaborate tattoos and piercings and such. I'd also like to see and hear throwaway-gags, like the propaganda in the Stallone-movie about the benefits of "recycled food".

I may indeed be in the minority her, but it doesn’t make me wrong… ;-)
I also doubt that you’ve actually undertaken a survey of people who saw the film to guage their opinions - you are associating your love of the picture, and those who also loved it as being representative; I’m suggesting that the general lack of interest in the film, the portion of the audience who didn’t like giving it poor/ negative word of mouth are a real force in there *not* being a sequel to this.
Secondly getting the DVD or Blu Ray isn’t an automatic sign of approval or a “Yes!” vote for a
sequel - any more than buying a cinema ticket says you had to have liked what you saw. *I* got the DVD, and it went to the Oxfam shop straight after I watched

It’s not a total disaster however; I know people who saw it in the cinema, and loved it, and others who disliked it. A campaign such as you mention *may* be the way ahead; there may be an audience who *can* be motivated into support, marketed to more directly, and that might feed into a “kick-starter” type funding for a specialist film. But by ordinary measures, the first film didn’t have cross-over to the non-fan market appeal, and *didn’t* satisfy all fans either, so it’s level of success was what it deserved, without appeals to “oh they marketed it badly” or “It was only in 3D”…

Sorry for reviving this when no-one will ever see it, but I was offline for a while and only just got a chance to reply.

You are right in that studios shouldn't include marketing in their production budgets, but the "exaggeration" you mention can often be for that purpose, all be it in an unofficial capacity. As I said, studios' accounting for movies is kinky as hell with bloats and deficits that don't really make much sense outside of the studio itself.

I'm not saying you're wrong, just that you are not entirely right, lol. Basically my point was just that different reported budgets is not such a strange thing when faced with the rabbit-hole of "Hollywood" budgeting logic.

Sorry again for the necro-post.

Sorry for the necro-post.

I disagree with your point about not noticing it after 5 minutes. I see where you are coming from, but I don't think it's necessarily a bad thing.

My ex wasn't a fan of 3D movies due to getting headaches (a legitimate issue which even affects me, though usually only during badly done conversions like Godzilla and the Narnia movies), so I often would see a movie in 2D with her and 3D with some friends or family. In the better filmed movies I found that I would stop noticing the 3D after a while and thought, like you say, that this made it a waste. However I found that in watching those same movies in 2D afterwards that certain scenes felt "flatter". Not just in the physical sense either. They just didn't feel the same. They were still good, being in good movies, but for some reason the depth added by the 3D made them better despite me not even noticing it. I'm not solely referencing action scenes, either. Many of the scenes were dialogue laden character bits.

Again, this is all a matter of opinion, obviously, and I will admit that there are many more movies that do not fall under this praise (I'm going to go with Godzilla agin, just because it sucked on so many levels), but the well made ones usually do.

It really all comes down to the skill and care put in by the film's creators, at the end of the day. There will always be hacks making awful movies no matter the format (I don't want to insinuate that Garth Edwards is a hack because I hear a lot of praise for his earlier works which I have not seen, but Godzilla sucked real bad, lol), but when good creators do good work not noticing something can often be a boon to the piece.

I didn't say studios SHOULDN'T include marketing but that studios DON'T include the cost of marketing in their published production budgets but they do inflate or deflate their published production budgets according to the impression they want to give of a particular film: if it's a small budget film that is trying to look more expensive they'll pretend it cost more; if it's a film that has overspent and they think it will flop, they'll put out a budget figure that is less than what they actually spent to save face.

Marketing budgets are rarely if ever published because they are considered separate accounting and are usually costs the studios charge themselves.

Hmm, that's a fair point I guess, although Avatar, that bastion of all that is good about 3d (apparently) saw a marked improvement on the 2D BD over the 3D cinema showing in my opinion. About the only scenes that are noticeably limited by not having 3D are the ones designed specifically because the film is in 3D. Most of which are unnecessary to the story (as far as I've seen, the only justifiable one was the way 3D was used in the Day of the Doctor for those Time Lord 'paintings', and even then, had that not been there, the story wouldn't have been particularly harmed).

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