In the parties’ first full collaboration, Reliance BIG Pictures and IM Global will finance DNA’s 3D production of Judge Dredd, a $45m revival of the 2000AD comic book character.

Filming is set to take place in Johannesburg in the fourth quarter based on a script by Alex Garland, who will produce with Andrew Macdonald and Allon Reich.

Pete Travis, whose credits include Vantage Point and Endgame, will direct. IM Global CEO Stuart Ford will commence sales here on what is certain to be one of the hottest titles in the market.

The Judge Dredd property is set in an ultra-violent, dystopian future where state-endorsed enforcers act as judge, jury and executioner as they dispense justice. Danny Cannon directed Sylvester Stallone in a 1995 version of the comic book.

John Wagner, who created the character with Carlos Ezquerra, said Garland’s script would be “faithful to the original concept that made Judge Dredd a favorite bad-ass hero. It’s a high-octane slay ride through the dark underbelly of the vast future city.”

Ford negotiated the deal on behalf of Reliance assisted by attorneys Strook and Strook with DNA principals Macdonald and Reich, DNA head of business affairs Jo Smith, and Miles Ketley of Wiggin & Co.

Last week Reliance announced it had taken a majority stake in IM Global, which started sales on key Reliance titles at the EFM in Berlin.