Unseen Judge Dredd art to be published in new collection

By Steven McKenzie
BBC Scotland Highlands and Islands reporter

image copyrightCliff Robinson/Hachette Partworks/2000AD
image captionArtwork by Cliff Robinson for the Dredd story Cycle of Violence

Previously unseen sketches of one of the UK's best-known comic book characters are to be published for the first time.

Judge Dredd was created by Greenock-raised writer John Wagner and Spanish artist Carlos Ezquerra.

The comic strips have been adapted for two movies, one starring Sylvester Stallone as the futuristic lawman.

The first definitive collection of all the Dredd stories, which began in 1977, will be released in January.

The Mega Collection will include previously unpublished sketches and designs, including artwork of Dredd as a zombie by British artist and designer Brendan McCarthy.

Illustrations by Cliff Robinson and Dylan Teague will also be among the previously unseen art.

image copyrightBrendan McCarthy/Hachette Partworks/2000AD
image captionPreviously unseen artwork by Brendan McCarthy will feature in the collection

London-based British comic 2000AD, which has carried many of the Dredd stories, and publisher Hachette Partworks will release the collection as a fortnightly 80-issue series.

Set in the 22nd Century, Dredd and his fellow enforcers act as judge, jury and executioner in Mega-City One - a sprawling North American metropolis of 400 million inhabitants.

Its co-creator Wagner moved from the US to Scotland when he was 12 and went on to work for Dundee publisher DC Thomson.

Later, during a spell as a freelance, he worked with Pat Mills, who went on to become a legendary Dredd writer, from a shed at Mills' home in Fife.

Among the artists to work on the comic strips have been Fort William-born Colin MacNeil and Cam Kennedy, who lives on Orkney.

Kennedy's other work included illustrating a story for Marvel which sees S.H.I.E.L.D boss Nick Fury come to Scotland to fight terrorists who had a base at the top of Orkney's Old Man of Hoy.

The Dredd comics have been the inspiration for two movies.

Released in 1995, the film Judge Dredd had Stallone in lead role.

The script for 2012's Dredd was written by Wagner, Ezquerra and Alex Garland. It starred Lord of the Rings actor Karl Urban as Dredd and Game of Thrones' Lena Headey as the main villain.

image copyrightDylan Teague/Hachette Partworks/2000AD
image captionArtwork by Dylan Teague will also appear in the new collection

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