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Director Wes Ball poses at a press line for "The Maze Runner" during the 2014 Comic-Con International Convention in San Diego, California July 25, 2014. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/File Photo

GOSSIP & RUMORS: ‘Planet of the Apes’ franchise looks to the future with new film ‘Kingdom’ – One America News Network

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April 25, 2024 – 4:08 PM PDT

Director Wes Ball poses at a press line for “The Maze Runner” during the 2014 Comic-Con International Convention in San Diego, California July 25, 2014. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) – “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes”, the latest installment in the sci-fi franchise, is both a sequel and a prequel, its director, Wes Ball, says.

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The action-adventure is the tenth “Planet of the Apes” movie and follows the reboot trilogy, which debuted in 2011 with “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” and includes the 2014 film “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” and 2017’s “War for the Planet of the Apes”.

“It’s certainly big shoes to fill,” Ball, known for the “Maze Runner” movies, said at the new film’s London launch on Thursday.

“We had to really decide if we had something good here. And I think we do. We have a reason to exist, we’re not just a part four, we’re kind of our own thing. We try to honour what came before, with the previous trilogy, but also the original 1968 movie,” he said.

“Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” is set several generations after the events of the 2017 film and centres on a young and naive but brave ape Noa (Owen Teague). When his peaceful eagle-raising clan is attacked and his family taken away, Noa sets off to find them. Encounters with an elderly orangutan and the first human he has met, Nova/Mae (Freya Allan), along the way teach Noa difficult truths about the past and bear consequences on his, and the planet’s future.

“It’s unique characters this time, it’s younger characters. There’s a kind of a youthful spirit. It’s a bit more of an adventure. It’s a road movie as we kind of travel across this landscape that’s slowly disappearing, the ruins of our world,” said Ball.

Like its predecessors, “Kingdom” uses motion-capture technology to bring the non-human characters to life. The cast spent six weeks in “ape school”, studying under movement coach Alain Gauthier, a former Cirque du Soleil performer and project director.

Actor Andy Serkis, who played lead chimpanzee Caesar in the previous three films, was hired as a special consultant to help the actors approach their characters.

“I’m very proud to, in a tiny way, be associated with its journey and sort of passing on the baton to the next generation and watching them create such an incredible movie,” Serkis, 60, said.

The global cinematic rollout for “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” begins on May 8.

Reporting by Hanna Rantala; Editing by Sandra Maler

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