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“Dawn” is a fitting word to describe the second installment of the Planet of the Apes films. Whether it’s the transition from ignorance to understanding, or the state of light invading darkness and alternatively the resistance of darkness to light, all are explored throughout director Matt Reeves’ excellent Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.
The film is introduced with a quick montage of information explaining what has happened since the end of Rise of the Planet of the Apes. In nearly ten years, a deadly virus has spread, killing off a majority of humanity and leaving the world in anarchy and violence. The apes escaped into the woods outside of San Francisco and have created a colony led by the advanced Caesar (Andy Serkis). A small group of disease-immune humans remain in the city, though they are without power and low on fuel resources. The humans, desperate for electrical power, »
- Monte Yazzie
Andy Serkis' work as a predominantly motion capture performer has changed the way movies are made. Over the years he's put in pioneering work in the Lord Of The Rings films, King Kong, Tin Tin, two Planet Of The Apes films and upcoming roles in The Avengers: Age Of Ultron and Star Wars: Episode VII. But does his achievments entitle him to an academy award considering the amount of CGI involved? Check out the embedded video below for Mr Sunday and Mason's view on the matter. And be sure to share your thoughts below and to subscribe to Mr Sunday's new channel, youtube.com/mrsundaymovies. Vote for Mr Sunday Movies on watchmojo.com. If you liked this, check out the official Comic Book Movie Podcast The Weekly Planet below, the latest episode of which looks Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apess. Subscribe to it on iTunes or download it directly here. »
It's the 1969 Academy Awards, and Walter Matthau and a tuxedo-clad chimp present John Chambers with an honorary Oscar for his work on Planet of the Apes. Viewed in retrospect it's one of the more surreal presentations in the ceremony's history, but this was something of a landmark event for the industry. It was only the second time the Academy had dished out a prize to make-up artists (William J Tuttle won four years earlier for 7 Faces of Dr Lao), and it highlighted the growing importance of Hollywood's backstage creative artists.
Fast-forward 45 years and prosthetics are giving way to digital pixels - for characters that require a complexity of movement and expression, performance capture technology gives a director the scope to execute their vision by marrying an actor's performance with visual effects. In its basic form, the actor will strap on a bodysuit that's wired up to a computer. All their »
From Gollum, to King Kong, to Caesar, Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes star Andy Serkis has mastered the art of performance-capture characters and taught the world that it is performance, not just visual effects. Here’s how he does it!
Serkis always does thorough research. For example, when playing King Kong he “went all out to play the psychology and the DNA of a pure gorilla,” studying the behaviour of real gorillas. For Caesar on Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, he closely looked at Oliver, the ‘humanzee’, a real-life chimpanzee with a rare genetic mutation that appeared to be a chimp-human hybrid
Finding The Physicality
Working closely with celebrated movement choreographer Terry Notary (who also plays chimp Rocket), Serkis made sure on both Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes and Dawn that every gesture and movement would ring true as that of a real chimpanzee. »
- Dan Jolin
Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes is a film about apes. The title isn't misleading or a metaphor or anything. This is a movie about primates and though there are human protagonists sharing screentime and functioning as significant pieces in the plot, it's very much an ape affair. Key characters - Caesar, Cornelia, Koba - are all chimpanzees.
Actually, that's not completely true. In fact it's a damn dirty ape lie for Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes is a work of great deception. This fresh bestial blockbuster employs the most state-of-art moviemaking technology to achieve its trickery, ironically bringing the primitive world to visceral life on screen by using the most advanced techniques available.
The truth about those convincing, hyper-real chimpanzees? Caesar is played by Andy Serkis, »
Set 10 years after its predecessor Dawn of the Planet of the Apes sees Andy Serkis reprise his role as Caesar, leader of a genetically evolved ape colony that is threatened by a band of human survivors. We’re not monkeying around when we say Serkis delivers one of the finest performances of the year, and when combined with Weta’s phenomenal CGI effects the result is something truly special.
Along with a handful of other journalists HeyUGuys were fortunate enough to sit down with the actor ahead of the film’s UK release, and an enjoyably chatty Serkis talked about how far performance capture has come in addition to developing Caesar’s voice and where the series might be headed in future instalments. It’s all been transcribed for your reading pleasure below.
What state was the storyline in when Rupert [Wyatt] was developing it, and what did Matt [Reeves] inherit?
- Amon Warmann
Andy Serkis is the star of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the weekend’s top film, and his performance as the first great ape is drawing attention—again—for his unique brand of artistic expression that fuses drama with digital effects. Some even think it deserves to be considered for an Academy Award. Yet in most serious cinematic discussion, his genius is frequently discounted: Yes, he’s amazing as Gollum and Kong and Caesar, but if only he could nab a real-person role that unleashed his gift and let us see the real him.
Folks, Serkis isn’t »
- Jeff Labrecque
On a London stage in 1992, a young Andy Serkis thought he was reaching the limits of actorly transformation. Playing Dogboy, "a bizarre, potentially quite violent street kid who thinks he's a dog," he'd strip naked each night, barking and biting, "much to my parents' shame."
But that was just the beginning for Serkis, 50, who had planned to spend his career acting in Ken Loach-style social-realist dramas. Instead, he's become a maestro of monsters. Through motion-capture technology, »
Director: Matt Reeves.
Running Time: 130 minutes.
Synopsis: After the simian flu causes the collapse of human civilisation, the apes’ society thrives. But when Caesar and the apes encounter humans for the first time in years, are they be able to co-exist or will the war for species superiority finally begin?
That 2011′s Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes was such a brilliant reboot came as a welcome surprise. Not because the potential of the franchise was ever in doubt, but because of the foul taste left in the mouth from Tim Burton’s abysmal 2001 ‘re-imagining’ (which was pure monkey business – a bit like Burton flinging his own shit around the place and masturbating at groups of tearful schoolchildren for the amusement of no one but himself).
The question now is whether the next instalment can sustain »
- Tom Fordy
If this weekend’s number one movie Dawn of the Planet of the Apes — the second entry in the rebooted Apes franchise — has a spiritual sibling in the original series of films, it is 1972′s Conquest of the Planet of the Apes. While Conquest was the fourth movie in the franchise to arrive in cinemas it is, like Dawn, the second according to the interior timeline of its series and, again like director Matt Reeves’ new film, features an apocalyptic showdown between apes and humans. Thus, it seems appropriate that this weekend Dawn of the Planet of the Apes comprehensively »
- Clark Collis
There’s a lot at stake with Dawn of the Planet of the Apes: human supremacy on a post-apocalyptic Earth, the well-being of a 45-year-old franchise property… the summer box office.
With ticket sales down across the board, Dawn finds itself in the once unlikely position of summer savior. The 2011 reboot, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, which starred James Franco and Andy Serkis as the motion-capture Prometheus ape, Caesar, was a solid critical and popular hit, grossing $176.7 million.
Expectation are much higher for Dawn, which is set 10 years after the events of Rise. Humanity has been devastated by the simian flu, »
- Jeff Labrecque
Andy Serkis definitely knows the meaning of monkey business. He revealed that while doing research for King Kong, one of the gorillas he studied for the part ended up developing something of an affection for him. "It was a beautiful thing at a time, but we haven't texted in a while," the Dawn of the Planet of the Apes star told Seth Meyers. Photos Hollywood's 100 Favorite Films Earlier, Taye Diggs talked about his recent divorce from Idina Menzel, "It's crazy. I am an emotional wreck, and I can stub my toe and then cry 'and I'm divorced!" Earlier
- Aaron Couch, Debbie Emery
In an interview back in March, io9 asked Dawn of the Planet of the Apes star Andy Serkis about the advancements in Weta's digital work when it comes to turning his performance capture work into characters such as King Kong, Gollum and now Caesar in Apes. "It's a given that they absolutely copy the performance to the letter, to the point in effect what they are doing is painting digital makeup onto actors' performances." Serkis said. Of course, with yet another masterful turn in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the chanting for an Oscar nomination for Serkis is bound to begin sooner rather than later, only this time around it may have been stopped in its tracks. Speaking with The Wrap, Weta's Joe Letteri, visual effects supervisor on Dawn of the Apes, addressed this idea of "digital makeup" head on saying, "I know that Andy has used that metaphor of digital makeup before, »
- Brad Brevet
In "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," Caesar (Andy Serkis) led his fellow imprisoned apes to freedom. "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes," set 10 years later, finds Caesar the leader of an evolving community of apes while the human population is in ruins thanks to the devastating "Simian Flu." A chance encounter between humans and apes threatens to destroy the peace for both species in this sequel, which opens Friday.
Moviefone traveled to San Francisco to chat with Serkis about why acting in a unitard is no different from any other costume, his role model for Caesar, and which of his films scarred his children for life.
Andy Serkis: I don't think I am, actually. I'm just an actor who's around at a time when performance capture is evolving. »
- Sharon Knolle
Motion-capture acting is a relatively new art form; after all, it's only in recent years that we've had computer-generated imagery good enough that it can transform the movement of a performer wearing a rubber suit covered with sensors into a digital character that moves and behaves like an actual human being. Or like an animal with a human-like intelligence, as in this weekend's release "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes."
In that film, as in 2011's "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," the simian leader Caesar is a digital creation based on the movements of Andy Serkis, universally recognized as the king of motion-capture acting for his work in Peter Jackson's movies (from his Gollum in the "Lord of the Rings" movies to his King Kong in Jackson's 2005 remake). Many critics have praised Serkis for proving that viewers can be moved by digital performances as much as by live-action ones, »
- Gary Susman
Though an accomplished actor without the megabytes of digital assists he’s most famous for wearing, Serkis may have reached a pinnacle of performance-capture acting with Caesar, which is quite a thing to say about the guy who broughtThe Lord of the Rings’ Gollum and King Kong’s big ape to life.
His most anticipated project, however, may be yet to come. Serkis is currently working in an undisclosed capacity on the next Star Wars movie — as of press time we don’t even know if his role will be digital or in the flesh.
The 50-year-old was on the phone from New York when we spoke about going ape for a film that’s expected to be »
- Bob Strauss - Cineplex Magazine
Andy Serkis is a marvel. No other actor has managed to create such indelible characters with the help of motion capture. Whether it is Gollum in The Lord Of The Rings or the iconic King Kong, he continues to offer wonderful and nuanced work as the effects improve. In Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, the actor began his journey as Caesar. With the sequel, Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes, he once again gives a remarkable performance which may stand out as one of the best of the year. When I »
While attending the Bizarre AC II in Atlantic City, we had a chance to chat three-on-one with Killer Klowns from Outer Space creators, the Chiodo Brothers, and the subjects ranged from their most famous film to contemporary genre cinema and lots more.
Settle in because the three of them, Stephen, Edward and Charlie, covered a lot of ground in a short amount of time. They have thick Bronx accents and talk very fast with great excitement and enthusiasm but without the hand gesticulation you would expect from a bunch of New Yorkers. Or perhaps the space in the booth was too tight to really see that kind of display in action.
Each brother built upon the other’s remarks, fast from topic to topic. Stephen added pointed conversation when necessary, but he, much like me, sat back while Edward and Charlie took center stage. Along with Killer Clowns from Outer Space of course, »
- Heather Buckley
Andy Serkis is the undeniable master of motion and performance-capture. His roles in films like The Lord of the Rings, King Kong, The Adventures of Tintin and Rise of the Planet of the Apes helped define the new art form, and his company, The Imaginarium, is the world’s premiere performance-capture studio. So, when he was announced as part of Star Wars: Episode VII‘s new cast, we wondered immediately if he would be taking his mo-cap talents to a galaxy far, far away.
In a new interview with Sci-Fi Now, Serkis spoke up about the motion-capture that will be used in Episode VII, and briefly mentioned his role in the highly anticipated film:
“It’s extraordinary. I grew up with Star Wars and was a massive fan of the original films. I never imagined in a million years that I’d be engaging with this. It’s just come about so organically. »
- James Garcia
Andy Serkis has appeared in some of recent history's biggest films, though audiences rarely get to see his face. He turned in an iconic performance as Gollum in The Lord of the Rings films, is stealing scenes as Caesar in the new Planet of the Apes films, and even took on one of cinema's biggest monsters in Peter Jackson's King Kong remake. If that wasn't good enough, Serkis is now working on a pair of highly anticipated films: Star Wars: Episode VII and Avengers: Age of Ultron. While we don't know exactly what roles he'll be performing in either film just yet, Serkis recently commented on the type of work he'll be doing. Hit the jump to see what he had to say. In an interview with Variety, Serkis addressed his work in Avengers: Age of Ultron through his performance-capture studio and consulting company, The Imaginarium. Here's the pertinent news: »
- Dave Trumbore
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