Having played several law breakers, Billy Bob Thornton is now ready to defend it, as the thesp is negotiating to join Robert Downey Jr. and Robert Duvall in Warner Bros.’ dramedy “The Judge.”

Vincent D’Onofrio also stars in the pic with David Dobkin helming.  Project will be a co-production between Team Downey and Big Kid Pictures: Susan Downey, Dobkin and David Gambino are producing.

Dramedy follows a big-city lawyer who returns to his childhood home where his estranged father, the town’s judge, is suspected of murder.  He sets out to discover the truth and along the way reconnects with the family he walked away from years before.

Thornton would play the special prosecutor brought in to try Duvall’s character.

Bill Dubuque has written the most recent draft, with Nick Schenk writing the original script.

After a lengthy search to find Downey’s father, the cast has come together quickly since Duvall’s attachment.

The WME and Media Talent Group repped Thornton can be seen next in Open Road’s “Parkland.”