Chimp king Caeser is ready to inherit the earth in 10 new photos from Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, which give us a look at these apes learning about human weapons and how to ride horseback. Director Matt Reeves and cast member Andy Serkis provide commentary for the accompanying images.
The humans have been wiped out from a deadly simian virus, with the highly intelligent ape Caesar ( Andy Serkis) leading an ape nation in a take over of the entire planet.
"We see him as a statesman and a leader and someone who has galvanized all of these apes. We see the beginning of their world."
Director Matt Reeves comments on Caesar's care-worn face.
"You can see a real haunted quality."
Andy Serkis says Caesar is not a fan of guns in the movie.
"Caesar's ethos is that apes do not like guns. He's trying to find a peaceful accord with the humans who show up. He's an empathetic character."
Director Matt Reeves explains the story, with the few human survivors in need of electricity while the apes sort out their anti-human agenda.
"In this story we are dealing with the razor's edge of peace. Caesar struggles with the question of peace and how do you act as a father and a leader."
Andy Serkis says there was an "ensemble cast" of other actors portraying primates in the film, all using motion-capture performances in outside locations such as New Orleans and the woods of Vancouver. In this story the apes have a major advantage: They don't need the creature comforts the humans require.
Koba (Toby Kebbell) has a strong hatred for humans after his time in captivity, but he respects Caesar's leadership.
The Apes have the capability of hydropower on their land in the Muir woods. The big question, Matt Reeves explains, is...
"Can they coexist?"
Matt Reeves reveals that while Caesar and Koba have had their differences, Caesar is clearly the Alpha Male.
"All of the apes follow Caesar with tremendous allegiance and respect. He is their king and sort of their father.
Malcolm, played by Jason Clarke, tries to make peace with the Apes. Both Malcolm and Caesar are fathers with wives. Says the director,
"The film centers around the notion of family. It's the survival of family and what lengths you will go to in order to protect them.
Andy Serkis continued,
"Caesar not only has a wife, but also an infant son and a teenage son. This film centers around the notion of family - the survival of the family and what lengths you would go to, to protect them when life is extremely hard and tough."
Do the humans stand a chance? Maybe, maybe not explains Matt Reeves.
"We all know it doesn't become 'Planet of the Humans and Apes,' it becomes 'Planet of the Apes' But this is that one moment where there is hope for the humans."
"We've got apes on horses. There is a sense in the beginning of the movie that apes have inherited the Earth. You see the species as it takes dominion over the planet. It's an ape-world. That's the fun of it. The small group of humans are struggling to come back from devastation, and the apes are fighting for survival. The big question is, can they co-exist?"
The director also talked about casting comedic actress Judy Greer in the movie, who plays Caesar's wife Cornelia. Stunt coordinator and movement choreographer Terry Notary, a former Cirque du Soleil performer, had to approve her for the role.
"Terry was supposed to report back to me to see if Judy would be able to express herself in a simian way. He called me afterwards and said that Judy was going to make a great ape. And she is."
Ultimately, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is the story of two families, one human, one evolved apes, as Caesar goes from revolutionary to governor in a war to rule the planet.