Planet Of The Apes
20th Century Fox

**UPDATE** Following the news that Wes Ball’s new ‘Planet of the Apes’ movie would be a complete reboot, the director himself took to Twitter to clarify that his film will indeed be set in the same continuity as the last three, and that “Caesar’s legacy will continue…”

Check back for more news as it becomes available.  The original article appears below:

In December, it was announced that Wes Ball (‘The Maze Runner’ series) would be tackling the ‘Planet of the Apes’ franchise, which was formerly held by 20th Century Fox, and now falls under the banner of the Disney empire.  As he posted on Twitter at the time:

“I would only do this if I felt I could offer something special while still honoring what’s come before. We have something that’s shaping up to be an awesome chapter to this franchise.”

Even though Ball stated that he loved the previous trilogy, directed by Rupert Wyatt and Matt Reeves and starring Andy Serkis in the motion capture role of Caesar, it is now being reported (starting with Discussing Film) that Ball’s movie will be a complete reboot rather than a continuation.

David Starke and Joe Hartwick Jr. are set to produce.  Daniel Dorrance, who worked on the ‘Maze Runner’ movies with Ball, is attached as production designer.

The first ‘Planet of the Apes’ in 1968, was based on French author Pierre Boulle’s 1963 novel ‘La Planète des singes’, and followed an astronaut, played by Charlton Heston, who found himself on a planet of intelligent, talking apes.  It’s surprise ending — that he was actually on Earth after the rise of the Apes and fall of the humans — is one of the great classic film moments, and the 1968 flick led to four sequels, a live-action TV series, and a cartoon.

Fox devised plans to revive ‘Planet of the Apes’ in the ’80s, but it spent nearly two decades in development hell before Tim Burton crafted an update in 2001, starring Mark Wahlberg.  Unfortunately, it proved to be extremely unpopular and sequel plans were abandoned.

Finally, in 2011, Rupert Wyatt helmed ‘Rise of the Planet of the Apes‘, conceived of as a remake of the original sequel ‘Conquest of the Planet of the Apes’ (1972), but which worked more as a prequel, showing the genetically enhanced Caesar’s journey from test subject to leader of an ape uprising.  That proved more successful than the 2001 attempt and led to the follow-ups ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes‘ and ‘War for the Planet of the Apes‘ both of which were directed by Matt Reeves.

But that series came to a satisfying close with ‘War’, so rather than milk it any more, it sounds as though Disney wants to start fresh with something new.  Reportedly, the plan is for the new picture to begin filming this year, which most likely means that the plan is to release it in theaters in 2022.

‘War’ just came out in 2017.  Rebooting older franchises is a tricky business.  Release the new films too soon and people feel overwhelmed or burnt-out.  Wait too long, and the franchise is old news that people no longer care about.

Are you looking forward to a new ‘Planet of the Apes’?