King Kong: According to Variety, Peter Jackson has cast his Gollum actor Andy Serkis as the title ape in King Kong.

In addition to forming the basis for the CGI-motored emotions of the chimp, Serkis will also play a live-action character named Lumpy, the cook on tramp steamer the Venture, which sails to Skull Island and captures the ape.

That's a lot more live-action screen time than he got in the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, where he was seen only briefly in the finale as Smeagol. Serkis, who recently appeared in 13 Going On 30, will return to New Zealand, where Jackson will shoot the film for Universal Pictures.

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The film also stars Naomi Watts, Jack Black and Adrien Brody. Peter Jackson wrote the script with Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens.

"I expect this time round will be a very different experience for both Andy and myself as we'll actually get to shoot extended drama sequences together," Jackson said. "It will be a little weird seeing Andy out of his Gollum gimp suit."

As for putting the Serkis touch on the ape, Jackson said...

"While Andy will provide very valuable on-set reference, this doesn't mean we will be softening Kong by attempting to humanize him. The power of the story lies in the fact that this is a savage beast from a hostile environment, and we don't intend to compromise that."
Brian B.