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KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES’ BEST EASTER EGGS

After 56 years and a landmark 10 movies, how many other franchises can say they’ve had as much of a mark on Hollywood as Planet of the Apes? We’ve had a few clunkers along the way (we’re looking at you, Tim Burton), but after 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes ushered in a new dawn, we’ve been treated to some “apesolute” masterpieces. 

Although it looked like Matt Reeves’ War for the Planet of the Apes rounded off the story in 2017, Wes Ball took the reins of the Ape-Verse and welcomes a new dynasty for Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes. Despite a jump to 300 years after the events of War for the Planet of the Apes, Ball isn’t monkeying around when it comes to honoring what’s come before. If we’ve capuchin-ed your attention, here are the 10 best Easter eggs from Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes.

HURRY AND BUY TIX FOR KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES HERE!

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Nova

 

 

 

 

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Alongside Owen Teague and Kevin Durand taking the leads in the ape stakes as Noa and Proxmius Caesar, it wouldn’t be an Apes movie without some downtrodden humans. This time, The Witcher’s Freya Allan plays Mae — an originally mute female whom Noa grows close to as things progress.

Raka the orangutan (Peter Macon) gives Mae the nickname of Nova, which is a nod to 1968’s original Apes movie, Tim Burton’s 2001 remake, and War for the Planet of the Apes. In the original timeline, Linda Harrison played Nova in the first movie and 1970’s Beneath the Planet of the Apes. She sadly met her end in the second movie’s glum ending, although her legacy lived on.

Lisa Marie played a very different Nova in the 2001 remake, appearing as a chimpanzee who could speak and wasn’t a fan of humans. In War for the Planet of the Apes, Amiah Miller played Nova and inadvertently spread the evolved version of Simian Flu to Colonel McCullough (Woody Harrelson). A seemingly meta joke has Raka mention how apes call them all Nova.

 

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Honoring the Original

 

 

More than being a continuation of the reboot trilogy, Kingdom is heavily inspired by Franklin J. Schaffner’s original Planet of the Apes. One of the big action scenes has Proximus Caesar’s apes chasing a group of humans through a stream. Alongside cinematic parallels of Mae running into the grass like Taylor (Charlton Heston) did, there are the same musical cues that Jerry Goldsmith used all those years ago. 

This is far from the only wink to Schaffner’s movie, with Kingdom’s harrowing bridge scene  featuring a similarly tense soundtrack and sinister scarecrows from the original. Ball directly acknowledged these ties with Den of Geek, explaining, “It just seemed like the right idea. It was a way of saying, ‘Hey, we’re making a Planet of the Apes movie here.’”

Perhaps the most obscure is the inclusion of a creepy doll when Noa, Mae, Anaya (Travis Jeffrey), and Soona (Lydia Peckham) enter the bunker. Ball told ScreenRant that the sound department used the exact same “mama” from way back when.

 

HURRY AND BUY TIX FOR KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES HERE!

 

Lawgiver

 

 

One of the most mysterious characters in the Ape-Verse is the Lawgiver, whose wise words are only mentioned in the first two movies. The character eventually appears in Battle for the Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes and bookends the movie by teaching a group of humans and apes about Caesar (no, not our Caesar).

Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes opens with a flashback to Caesar’s death, seeing Andy Serkis’ mo-capped monkey being burned on a funeral pyre. This leads to a major time jump of several generations, and even though the movie doesn’t make it clear, we know it’s around 300 years. Even after all this time, Caesar’s ways are being taught, with Raka being the last member of the Order of Caesar. 

Raka refers to Caesar as “lawgiver”, hammering home that he’s some biblical messiah. Given that the opening featured Maurice the orangutan, there are theories that he founded the Order of Caesar, and these ways have been passed down. With the Order of Caesar and Proximus Caesar seemingly defunct by the end of Kingdom, there are worries that Caesar’s legacy will be lost. Don’t worry, we’ve got a theory on that later. 

 

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Caesar by Name Alone

 

 

Durand steps up as the big bad of Kingdom, with the egotistical Proximus Caesar taking the name of the reboot trilogy’s hero in name alone. The bloodthirsty bonobo shows how far we’ve come from Caesar’s days, with Proximus Caesar feeling more like Toby Kebbell’s Koba from Rise and Dawn

Raka wears a symbol around his neck, which is repeated several times throughout. This is an Easter egg in itself, with it mirroring the window of the house where Caesar was raised by James Franco’s Will Rodman. After an enraged Raka dismisses the idea that Proximus Caesar is teaching the ways of our Caesar, it’s clear it’s more than 300 years that separate the two leaders. 

We’re calling it now, but it feels like Ball is building up to the reveal that Noa is the descendant of Caesar. An impressive Reddit thread highlights how Caesar and Noa also look like they could be related, while someone else noticed how the latter’s eyes sometimes appear blue — showing possible similarities with Caesar’s son, Blue Eyes. 

 

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Look to the Stars

 

 

Assuming Ball goes for bigger and better, a Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes sequel might (quite literally) shoot for the stars. Space is a recurring theme in the movie, with Noa and Mae gazing through a telescope. Later, we see Noa fascinated by the mobile of the solar system and having a particular obsession with Saturn.

Tim Burton’s 2001 reboot conveniently had the Oberon space station near Saturn before Mark Wahlberg’s Leo Davidson was pulled through an electromagnetic storm. Also, Charlton Heston’s Taylor was an astronaut who crashed on the titular planet in 1968’s movie. Ball told Den of Geek how we’re edging closer to the events of the 1968 movie, and while he’s yet to confirm we’ll get a full-blown remake, it definitely feels like the cosmos awaits. 

Franchise fanatics haven’t forgotten the tease of the Icarus mission and an astronaut that looks suspiciously like Heston’s Taylor being lost in space during 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes. It’s a suitably out-there theory, but what if Noa glimpsed a satellite or space station while peering into the cosmos?

 

HURRY AND BUY TIX FOR KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES HERE!

 

Apes Strong Together

 

 

A bit like the laws of Animal Farm, the apes live by a simplistic code of laws. Back in the original timeline, there were two laws: “Ape shall never kill ape” and “Humans shall never say no to an ape.” The latter was cleverly incorporated into Rise of the Planet of the Apes when Caesar bellowed “No” and broke free from the zoo. We thought we were going to get a rehash of this with Mae shouting “No,” but instead, she shouts, “Noa.” 

The rule of “Ape shall never kill a