US publishers Dynamite Entertainment, whose titles include Red Sonja, Xena and Battlestar Galactica, and who recently announced a new Buck Rogers title, have just secured the rights to produce an all-new Judge Dredd comic for the American market, likely to launch in mid 2009.
Top US comics site Newsarama reports Dynamite Entertainment has landed the rights from Rebellion to produce an original Judge Dredd comic aimed at an American audience, with Garth Ennis and John Wagner as Dredd’s likely creators/overseers. Dynamite has also secured rights to other 2000AD characters but Dredd will eb the first title out of the gate.
The company, which made a success of titles such as Red Sonja and BSG, is clearly hoping it will do better than DC Comics previous Dredd title or the 1980’s Eagle Comics reprints published. Nick Barrucci, President of Dynamite Entertainment told Newsarama that the deal with 2000AD and Judge Dredd owner Rebellion is something that he’s been hoping to work out since he started the company.
“I had stopped by Garth Ennis’ apartment one day to talk about some of his other work, and Rebellion came up,” Barrucci revealed. “I told him that I had wanted to publish Judge Dredd in the United States for a while and had not had any luck in reaching the right person at Rebellion. Garth told me that he was in touch with one of the editors over there, Matt Smith, on a somewhat regular basis, and offered to reach out to him. Garth made the introduction, smoothed the way for us a bit, and from there, we started working with Rebellion’s business affairs, and we started the ball rolling. We’ve been working on this for the last four months, at this point.”
The full creative team has yet to be decided but it’s reported both Brian Bolland and Alex Ross will be cover artists.
Judge Dredd was first published in US comic format in 1983, one of several Eagle Comics reprint titles, and the magazine Comics Revue republished episodes of the Judge Dredd newspaper strip which was first published in the Daily Star. Don Markstein’s Toonpedia notes DC Comics licensed the character in 1994, publishing original Dredd stories for two years as well as running a reprint series. Dredd has also appeared in several crossover comcis with US comic characters, including Batman, Lobo and the Dark Horse Comics’ licensed version of 20th Century Fox’s Predator in 1997.