Why Dredd Was A Flop, According To Karl Urban

You can have all the fan buzz and critical acclaim in the world behind your back, and sometimes the box office still crashes and burns when it's your turn to bow. Just ask anyone behind the 2012 cult favorite Dredd, which has won a fanbase rabid enough to have a steady demand for a sequel. Those hopes aren't too high though, as even Urban can tell you, the botched marketing job on the first film pretty much ensured a long, hard road to any sort of a sequel.

During talks that Yahoo had reported on between the Star Trek Beyond star and the press, Karl Urban wasn't shy to point out the obvious flaw in Lionsgate's attempt at drumming up interest for Dredd's reboot of the Judge Dredd mythos. More specifically, Urban laid out the failure, as well as the justification for any sort of sequel, in these particular terms:

Dredd represented a failure in marketing. I saw the tracking of that film weeks before it came out and the fundamental problem was no one knew it was being released. Once it came out on DVD and it sold 750,000 copies in the first week alone in North America alone, it was very clear that the audience had discovered it.

Say what you will about Dredd's theatrical performance, which saw the Pete Travis directed film opening with its career high of sixth place, but the DVD / Blu Ray charts were where the film absolutely crushed. The film debuted with a first place showing when it landed on home video, which is pretty strong evidence for Karl Urban's remarks that audiences unaware of the film's release window would have been more likely to see the film in theaters, should they have been enlightened. If that doesn't make a big enough case for Dredd's actual appeal to audiences, then perhaps the continued talk about a sequel is enough to convince the powers that be that a follow-up is more than a wasted wish.

Even Karl Urban himself has been stoking the fires, as he recently shared a tweet that caused the judge himself to state that a second life as a Netflix or Amazon series would be a welcomed change of venue for the legendary comic franchise. With the fans and the folks that loved the brilliant madness that is Dredd both joining forces to pitch a revival, perhaps it's time to take another look at the possibility of Judge Dredd's continuing adventures.

In the meantime, you can see Karl Urban in Star Trek Beyond, which hits theaters on July 22nd; or in Dredd, which is still being sold at an extremely reasonable price for a Blu-ray/3D combo pack.

Mike Reyes
Senior Movies Contributor

Mike Reyes is the Senior Movie Contributor at CinemaBlend, though that title’s more of a guideline really. Passionate about entertainment since grade school, the movies have always held a special place in his life, which explains his current occupation. Mike graduated from Drew University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, but swore off of running for public office a long time ago. Mike's expertise ranges from James Bond to everything Alita, making for a brilliantly eclectic resume. He fights for the user.