Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes

December 13, 2011 by staff 

Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, The box-office revenue generated by “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” ranks as major-league monkey business.

The PG-13 prequel, which opened Aug. 5, grossed $176.5 million in the U.S. and Canada. Overseas, it was much more impressive, grossing a massive $304.3 million in foreign markets.

“Rise of the Planet of the Apes” (Fox; $29.99, DVD; $39.99, Blu-ray Disc; Dec. 13) is a cautionary prequel and stars James Franco, Frieda Pinto, John Lithgow and Tom Felton. In the story, genetic-engineering experiments designed to cure Alzheimer’s disease go horribly wrong and eventually allow simians to rule the Earth in “Planet of the Apes” (1968).

Director Rupert Wyatt (“The Escapist”) employed motion-capture computer effects, masterminded by Center High School graduate Joe Letteri, to create the chimps, namely for Andy Serkis, who plays Caesar, who’s leading the revolution against humans.

The gifted Serkis previously worked with Letteri as the motion-capture creature Gollum in the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy and the great ape in the “King Kong” remake, both directed by New Zealand filmmaker Peter Jackson.

In the production notes for “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” Serkis discusses the major changes that drive his chimp to become a revolutionary.

“Caesar becomes a prisoner (by the film’s second act),” Serkis says. “He gets taken away from a loving environment and feels rejected.

“He is imprisoned in San Bruno Sanctuary, where he’s put in a cage, surrounded by these disturbed wild creatures after being rejected by the human beings who have been his parents and loved ones. He’s questioning his identity.

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