Dawn of the Planet of the Apes director Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Let Me In) has tweeted a new photo from the set of the movie due out May 23, 2014. And if this isn’t a doozy to quicken the hearts of all true fans of the Apes franchise, I don’t know what is. It’s a shot of Reeves talking to Andy Serkis in his motion-capture suit (on the right) riding a horse! That means apes will be riding horses in the movie, just like in Charlton Heston’s original 1968 classic, Planet of the Apes.
But what could be going on here? In 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Serkis’ Caesar was last seen fleeing into Marin County’s Muir Woods with his cognitively-enhanced simian companions after a battle on San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge. He had violently rejected humanity after a series of gross misunderstandings and bid farewell to his former master James Franco and female tag-along (can’t really call her a character) Freida Pinto. The final moments of Rise saw the plague Franco had engineered strickening all of humanity, presumably leading to our near-extinction. That means the apes can now make their conquest! Paging Roddy McDowall and Ricardo Montalban!
Except, if this photo is any indication, the apes still appear to be hiding out in the forest. Maybe they’re just using Muir Woods — which movie fans will recognize immediately from Vertigo and Return of the Jedi — as their home base or staging area, because we do know that Gary Oldman has been cast as the leader of humanity’s resistance to the ape threat. Oldman will be joined by Keri Russell (reuniting with her old Felicity exec producer Reeves), Judy Greer, Kodi Smit-McPhee, and Zero Dark Thirty‘s Jason Clarke.
Does this photo make you excited for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes or what?
Follow Christian Blauvelt on Twitter @Ctblauvelt