The Apes have taken control of Earth, pushing humanity to the margins of existence. But there is no harmony between Ape tribes. In KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES, a new Ape leader will threaten to destroy everything that has been built in just a few generations, all in search of a lost human technology.
Following Fox's last APES trilogy, which concluded with WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES in 2017, this movie marks the beginning of a new Ape saga. The first trailer introduces many characters and sets up the Ape-controlled world. Check it out and we'll tell you everything we know so far about KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES.
What Is the Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes Release Date?
20th Century Studios will release KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES exclusively in movie theatres on May 24, 2024.
Watch the First Trailer for Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes
We don't meet characters by name in this trailer but we do get to see a a lot! There are a wide variety of Apes, from warriors and warlords to idealistic dreamers. Humans are clearly not the dominant species any longer, and a power struggle between ape clans — with humans perhaps used as chattal — appears to be brewing.
What Is Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes About?
So far, details are pretty scarce when it comes to the story in the new Apes movie. 20th Century Studios has said "a new saga begins," suggesting that this is the first of multiple movies, and also notes that this first new movie takes place "many years after WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES."
In that movie, Caesar led Apes to an oasis where they could exist peacefully. Since settling there, a variety of Ape societies have grown as humanity has devolved outside the border of Ape lands. Caesar is an almost mythological figure, with some Apes existing in ignorance of his life and efforts, while others use Caesar's acts as a basis for their own struggle to gain power.
Against that backdrop, says the Hollywood Reporter, "one ape leader begins to enslave other groups to find human technology, while another ape, who watched his clan be taken, embarks on a journey to find freedom. A young human woman becomes key to the latter’s quest, although she has plans of her own." All of those elements are seen at least briefly in the first trailer.
Will Humans Play a Big Role in Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes?
At this point we don't know how significant the role of human characters will be in KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES. The plot synopsis above tells us that at least one human will be important, and perhaps we'll see more of her family or society.
It sounds like there aren't a lot of humans left on Earth, but that doesn't mean they won't show up. Chances are, however, that most of the cast will be playing Ape characters using the same advanced mo-cap and CG-animation techniques seen in the last few films.
The Cast of Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes
So far, we know of a number of cast members of the new movie. Owen Teague () stars in KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES as Cornelius, the son of Caesar. Freya Allen ("The Witcher") appears, likely as the human girl mentioned above. The cast also features Peter Macon, Eka Darville, Kevin Durand, Travis Jeffery, Neil Sandilands, Sara Wiseman, Lydia Peckham, Ras-Samuel Weld A'abzgi, William H. Macy, and Dichen Lachman of the wonderful TV series, "Severance." We don't know anything about their roles, but the first trailer will likely tell us a lot more.
Who Is Directing Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes?
Wes Ball, who made the MAZE RUNNER movies, is directing KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES. The movie went into production in October of 2022, based on a script by Josh Friedman, Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver and Patrick Aison, with input from Ball. Hungarian cinematographer Gyula Pados, who also shot the second and third MAZE RUNNER movies for Ball, is behind the camera.
We're waiting to learn who occupies a couple of other key positions on the movie. We don't yet know who will do the score, for example. And while WETA Digital did the groundbreaking special effects for the last three Apes movies — including the amazing motion-capture animation for characters like Caesar — we don't know if they're involved this time. We'll likely learn when the trailer arrives.
KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES opens on May 24, 2024.
All images courtesy of 20th Century Studios.