It’s been five years since the release of 20th Century Studios’ post-apocalyptic sci-fi film War of the Planet of the Apes. While the finale closed the book on Caesar’s story, it still left plenty of room for more stories to tell and an expansion of the mythology that started back in 2011. Now, we are getting a first tease of what’s to come in Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes.
While it’s just a teaser photo, the concept art gives us a small look at what to expect from the franchise’s fourth installment. For one thing, the planet looks more like it was before man perverted it with their buildings and pollution. Now, the lush greenery covers what remains. Considering that humankind has all but extinct, it’s interesting to see how the apes have evolved and adapted while still having specific tools left behind by man.
For instance, we see that the one ape pictured uses saddles and reins to control their horse while calling back a bird. It should be interesting to see where the apes are at this point in time and their dynamics with the humans, most of whom have been wiped out by the Simian Flu or regressed into animals. What’s more, the franchise is going to experience a shift in story and character now that Owen Teague plays the lead ape, replacing Andy Serkis, who played Caesar in the last three films.
On the production side of things, Wes Ball (The Maze Runner trilogy) takes over as director after Matt Reeves departed to helm The Batman and its sequel. This film starts an all-new chapter in the Planet of the Apes saga, picking up many years after the conclusion of 2017’s War for the Planet of the Apes. The screenplay is by Josh Friedman (War of the Worlds), Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), and Patrick Aison (Prey). Joe Hartwick Jr. (The Maze Runner trilogy), Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, and Jason Reed (Mulan) are the film’s producers. Peter Chernin and Jenno Topping are the executive producers.
“Planet of the Apes is one of the most iconic and storied science fiction franchises in film history, as well as being an indelible part of our studio’s legacy,” said Steve Asbell, President of 20th Century Studios. With Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, we are privileged to continue the tradition of imaginative, thought-provoking cinema, and can’t wait to share Wes’ extraordinary vision for this new chapter with audiences in 2024.”
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® and followed by four theatrical sequels and two television series. A Planet of the Apes remake, directed by Tim Burton, was released in 2001, then a 2011 reboot, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, was followed by two sequels, 2014’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and 2017’s War for the Planet of the Apes.
No word yet on when Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes will be released, but we should expect to see it in theaters sometime in 2024.