Fans of the recent Planet of the Apes trilogy will have to pour one out for Caesar’s band of primates as the franchise is getting rebooted. We learned shortly after the Disney/Fox merger went into effect last March that a few franchises would continue on, one of them being Planet of the Apes. At the time, it wasn’t clear if Disney would continue beyond what Matt Reeves set up at the end of 2017’s War for the Planet of the Apes, or if they would opt to hit the reset button. It looks as though they’re going with the latter options.
According to a new report, which focused on Daniel Torrence boarding the project as a production designer, it’s said the new Planet of the Apes movie coming from Disney will indeed be a reboot. As we reported in December, Wes Ball (The Maze Runner) is set to develop the reboot. Story details are being kept under wraps for the time being, but Ball previously said it will honor “what’s come before.” This could possibly be another full-on remake of the classic 1968 movie that launched the franchise. Tim Burton previously directed a remake which starred Mark Wahlberg and was released in 2001. It was savaged critically and didn’t perform terribly well at the box office ($362 million), considering its $100 million budget.
Whatever the case, it seems Disney would rather start from scratch while honoring the past, rather than be anchored to what came before. No matter how good or successful the recent trilogy may have been. In 2011, 20th Century Fox released Rise of the Planet of the Apes, which traced the origins of how apes inherited the Earth. With Rupert Wyatt in the director’s chair and Andy Serkis leading the way as Caesar, the movie was a surprise critical and commercial success. Matt Reeves (Cloverfield), took over for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and War for the Planet of the Apes. Both movies were received very well by both critics and audiences. The trilogy, in total, grossed $1.67 billion globally.
War for the Planet of the Apes left things off in such a place that a continuation seemed possible, but it also provided enough closure to serve as a satisfying ending. Considering the success, why would Disney opt to reboot? Since the Fox merger, Disney has taken a bath on movies that were produced by the studio that they ultimately inherited. Dark Phoenix, Ad Astra, The Art of Racing in the Rain, Stuber and, just this past weekend, Downhill, all flopped at the box office.
With that in mind, Disney has no reason to trust in what Fox had going before they took over. Disney has proved they know how to revitalize a franchise and create a financially successful brand. For better or for worse, Planet of the Apes has a ton of potential in Disney’s hands. No release date has been set, but filming is possibly set to begin later this year. We’ll be sure to keep you posted as further details are made available. This news comes to us via Discussing Film.