Producer takes over, bans director: Is Judge Dredd in trouble?

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Marc Bernardin
Dec 15, 2012

It sounded like a geek dream come true: Erase the memory of the shoddy Sylvester Stallone flick by hiring a hot actor with major genre cred, the guy who wrote 28 Days Later, and a promising young director. Then why, after the film has wrapped, is there an ugly battle waging over the fate of Judge Dredd?

For the most part, Lord of the Rings and Star Trek veteran Karl Urban's work is done on this Judge Dredd reboot, as filming stopped a while back, but the real action is taking place in the editing suite.

According to The L.A. Times, relations between director Pete Travis (Vantage Point) and Dredd's producers have deteriorated and writer-producer Alex Garland has been editing the film without Travis' involvement:

In fact, so involved are Garland and two other producers, Andrew Macdonald and Allon Reich, that Garland may seek a co-director credit on the movie. Although he's made no decision on whether he'll seek that credit—a petition would need to be filed with the Directors Guild of Great Britain—the fact that the possibility is even being considered is unusual. Garland is a novelist and screenwriter who did not shoot the movie and has never been credited with directing a picture before. ...

Although the specifics of the disagreement that led to Travis' dismissal are up for debate, two sources said it arose when Travis and producers and executives in charge of the production did not see eye-to-eye on footage Travis was delivering.

The idea of a director being forcibly replaced on a film is as old as movies itself: That's why there's an Alan Smithee pseudonym, so directors can distance themselves from work they no longer feel comfortable calling their own. What makes this noteworthy is the possibility of Garland being promoted to co-director after the fact. Perhaps it'll make more sense if Garland oversees any reshoots—which seem likely, given how displeased the producers were with the footage.

We were already curious about this rebooted Dredd; this only stokes the fire. Too bad we'll have to wait until 2012 to see the finished product.

(via L.A. Times)

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