Both Judge Dredd actors have now starred in movies based on DC, Marvel and 2000AD stories and Sylvester Stallone can claim to have just beaten Urban.
Sylvester Stallone has become the latest actor to join the huge cast of James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad, marking not only his first time appearing in a DC movie but also only the second time any actor has appeared in adaptations from three specific comic book imprint sources. Should Stallone’s casting – which would reunite him with Gunn after they worked together on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 – go ahead, Stallone would join Karl Urban as the only two actors to play characters from DC comics, Marvel comics, and popular long-running British comic series 2000AD on the big screen.
Stallone’s casting in The Suicide Squad further boosts an impressive cast that already includes the likes of Idris Elba, Margot Robbie, John Cena, and Viola Davis. While the majority of the Suicide Squad sequel’s cast have seen their characters revealed, some – like MCU director Taika Waititi’s role – remain secret, which would also be the case for Stallone. Presumably, his late-stage addition to proceedings would suggest he’s not in a major role and the fact that the announcement only mentioned a single day of “work” could mean Stallone is following Rob Zombie, Miley Cyrus, and Nathan Fillion into a voice-only role for Gunn. King Shark’s voice performer has not yet been confirmed…
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Whoever he plays, this will not be Stallone’s first comic book movie. He previously appeared as Stakar Ogord in the second Guardians of the Galaxy movie and before that put on the iconic helmet as Judge Dredd for 1995’s uneven adaptation. That trio of roles makes Stallone only one of two actors to have played characters from Marvel, DC (and DC imprints) and 2000AD alongside Karl Urban, who played the latter’s iconic Judge Dredd in the 2012 adaptation. Considering 2000AD’s longevity, that is a strangely specific claim to be able to make and Stallone’s Suicide Squad 2 casting would give him the edge, as his movie would be based on a mainline DC title and not one from a DC imprint.
So far, three movies have been based on 2000AD stories, with both Dredd adaptations joined by cult classic sci-fi Hardware. Two other modern DCEU actors can claim to have starred in Judge Dredd – Diana Lane who plays Martha Kent and Ewen Bremner, who played Charlie in Wonder Woman, but neither has worked on Marvel adaptations. Only Urban’s roles in Dredd, Red (based on DC Imprint Homage’s comic), and Thor: Ragnarok managed the trio of long-running comics franchises. And now, Stallone’s Suicide Squad 2 casting joins Urban’s accolade.
That record is unlikely to be something either actor is particularly rewarded for, but for 2000AD fans, it’s a record worth noting about the sci-fi comic that was founded in 1977 and has outlived a huge number of Marvel and DC’s publishing competition. If that draws more attention to 2000AD’s stories, which should have made it to the big screen more in the last forty-plus years, then it is a positive. It’s also a pleasantly cyclical resolution to the link between the two actors to have played Judge Dredd on the big screen. And until any future 2000AD adaptations – like Rogue Trooper, which was picked up by Sam Worthington’s production company in 2011 – Stallone’s The Suicide Squad role is the only opportunity for any actor to hit land both Marvel, DC and 2000AD projects.
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Key Release Dates
- The Suicide Squad (2021)Release date: Aug 06, 2021
- Wonder Woman 1984 (2020)Release date: Dec 25, 2020
- DC Super Pets (2022)Release date: May 20, 2022
- The Flash (2022)Release date: Nov 04, 2022
- The Batman (2022)Release date: Mar 04, 2022
- Aquaman 2 (2022)Release date: Dec 16, 2022
- Shazam 2 (2023)Release date: Jun 02, 2023
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