The Planet of the Apes franchise isn't done yet, as it's been revealed that the series will continue under Disney's roof. Disney completed its $71.3 billion merger with Fox back in March, which brought with it the entirety of the movie studio 20th Century Fox. As such, Disney inherited a whole bunch of franchises and the fates of many of those franchises have remained up in the air for months. Details on this one are still a bit fuzzy, but we haven't seen the last of the Apes on screen just yet.
It had previously been suggested at CinemaCon that Planet of the Apes was one of the franchises Disney intended to keep up with following the merger. However, a lot has changed since then. The majority of the movies that were produced by Fox, which are now being released by Disney, have failed to perform at the box office. Dark Phoenix, for example, is one of the biggest bombs of 2019, which helped lead to an underwhelming quarter for Disney, financially speaking. With that in mind, whatever Disney's plans were a few months ago may have radically shifted.
Case in point, during Disney's recent investor call, it was revealed that much of Fox's production slate is being axed. Very few projects that were developed when Fox was still just Fox are going to move forward. James Cameron's Avatar sequels are an example, with Planet of the Apes listed as another. Beyond the fact that a new movie in the classic franchise is on the way, precious few details have been made available at this time. However, a report states specifically that it will be "a continuation," which seems to imply they will keep going down the path the previous movies had been traveling down, as opposed to rebooting the series yet again.
Fox reinvigorated the classic franchise, which kicked off back in 1968 with the original, by going in a bold, new direction with Rise of the Planet of the Apes in 2011. When director Matt Reeves took over for the sequel, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the series reached its full potential, in no small part thanks to Andy Serkis in the lead role as the ape Caesar. 2017's War for the Planet of the Apes, similarly, was a critical and commercial success, yet no sequel had been announced.
To date, the trilogy of movies in the rebooted series has grossed $1.68 billion at the global box office. War for the Planet of the Apes left things off in a satisfying enough place that no further sequels were necessarily needed. However, the door was certainly left open for a continuation, should the studio deem that necessary. As for whether or not Matt Reeves will return to the director's chair? He's currently busy with The Batman and the indication is he'll be doing a trilogy, if all goes well. So Disney will likely need to find a new filmmaker to take over. This news was previously reported by Variety.