Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, the first movie in this franchise made by Disney's 20th Century Studios, will be directed by Wes Ball from a screenplay by Josh Friedman, Patrick Aison, and Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver.
The latter duo, who also worked on Avatar: The Way of Water, previously penned Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and while plot details are being kept a closely guarded secret, this movie is expected to start an all-new chapter in the Planet of the Apes saga, picking up several years after the conclusion of 2017's War for the Planet of the Apes.
Talking to FilmSpeak (via SFFGazette.com), Silver confirmed that production is just weeks away from concluding, with Jaffa adding that while they both went through a "period of mourning" for Caesar, "There's just a lot of story left to tell."
"Caesar created something and left a legacy," he adds, teasing how the ape who started this simian revolution will still be an important part of this story. "So then the questions are: what happens with that? What becomes of his legacy?"
While speculation continues to run rampant that it's Caesar's son who will become the dictator we all know and fear from the original movies, the writers made it clear that Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes isn't going to be the movie that takes us to a post-apocalyptic Earth ruled over by the apes.
"Do we want to rush toward an ending [the beginning of the original Planet of the Apes], or do we want to find an interesting story to tell with interesting characters?" he asks, suggesting this new trilogy is in no hurry to get us back to that iconic setting.
So, it's a sequel to the prequels, but still a prequel? We'll see how that goes, but it's an intriguing idea.
Planet of the Apes is one of 20th Century Studios’ most popular and enduring franchises, amassing more than $1.7 billion worldwide. Based on a novel by Pierre Boulle, the first film in the series was released by Twentieth Century Fox in 1968 and went on to become one of the year’s biggest hits, winning a special Academy Award.
Since then, Tim Burton, Rupert Wyatt, and Matt Reeves have all put their spin on the franchise, and it's now Ball's turn to pick up where they left off.
Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes is set to be released on May 24, 2024.