The Planet of the Apes franchise could continue without Caesar
After RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES wound up being a bigger hit than any of us suspected, it became clear that Andy Serkis' Caesar was going to be the real star of the rebooted series. The sequel put even more focus on Caesar and his community of apes and WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES looks as though it will be the most ape-centric entry yet. Assuming the upcoming sequel is a success, what does the future of the PLANET OF THE APES franchise hold and can it continue without Caesar leading the charge? According to WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES director Matt Reeves while he spoke with ScreenRant, the APES universe was always meant to be larger than just Caesar.
It’s all one universe and Caesar has a very important part in ape history. We think of him being the seminal figure in ape history like Moses but as the idea, that tapestry, extends outward, there are all kinds of new characters in this story that you could absolutely follow. It’s really about this trajectory that all of the apes are on, that all of the characters are on, and have been very intentionally centered around Caesar, but the universe is meant to be larger than just him as well.
Given the dire nature of the WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES synopsis, it's entirely possible that Caesar may not even survive the events of the upcoming film. However, even if we do see the last of Caesar next summer, it's not like Andy Serkis would have to depart the franchise as there's always the chance that he could continue to be involved as a completely different ape, or human, character.
That would be an amazing thing to do. It would be an extraordinary thing to do. As Matt [Reeves] has always said, we know the outcome and it’s just how long you want to make from here to there to that outcome. There’s infinite possibilities of carrying on the mythic arc of their journey together.
Reeves added that "it would be really cool if, in the future, should that ever happen, if Andy wanted to come back and play anything he wanted." If you're familiar with the original PLANET OF THE APES franchise, you'll know that the same actors playing different roles isn't exactly unheard of. For example, Roddy McDowall played Cornelius in PLANET OF THE APES and ESCAPE FROM THE PLANET OF THE APES, Caesar in CONQUEST OF THE PLANET OF THE APES and BATTLE FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES and would star as Galen in the short-lived Planet of the Apes TV series in 1974.
WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES hits theaters on July 14, 2017.