War for the Planet of the Apes is now playing in theaters nationwide. This film is being discussed as the third part of a trilogy that began with Rise of the Planet of the Apes, so does that mean there will be no more movies in the franchise after this? Or will there be a sequel to War for the Planet of the Apes?
No sequel to War for the Planet of the Apes has been announced, but director Matt Reeves has indicated that he fully intends for there to be another installment. It sounds like the production of a fourth film is dependent upon how War performs at the box office, but if it does well, Reeves certainly has ideas about what happens next. In particular, he has said that the character of Bad Ape is a hint at the future of the franchise.
“When [co-writer] Mark [Bomback] and I came up with the idea for Bad Ape in War, that was to imply the idea that there would be apes out there in the world that Caesar and his apes knew nothing of, and that they wouldn’t have had the benefit of Caesar’s leadership and the values that he had instilled in his community,” Reeves told Fandango. “Future conflicts in this kind of epic journey [may] take us toward the ’68 movie without necessarily ever getting there [and] could be about conflicts between apes, not just conflicts between humans and apes.”
Reeves also said in an interview with Screen Rant that the franchise can certainly live on without Caesar.
“We think of [Caesar] being the seminal figure in ape history like Moses but as the idea, that tapestry, extends outward, there are all kinds of new characters in this story that you could absolutely follow,” Director Matt Reeves told Screen Rant. “It’s really about this trajectory that all of the apes are on, that all of the characters are on, and have been very intentionally centered around Caesar, but the universe is meant to be larger than just him as well.”
War for the Planet of the Apes is very much considered to be the end of a trilogy, though, even if there are more Apes films to come.
“We made a very conscious decision frankly, when we started thinking about this seven or eight years ago, to look at these three movies as a trilogy in a lot of ways,” Producer Peter Chernin told Den of Geek “…It was inevitable from the moment apes gained intelligence that apes and humans were going to be on a collision course for what would be the dominant species on Earth. And this movie is the war to resolve that dominance. We’ve always looked at this as a three-part story. And the appropriate ending of that story is to see which species dominates.”
Chernin went on to say that whether there are more movies depends a lot on how well this movie performs.
“Look, obviously we are somewhat dependent upon the box office gods,” Chernin told Den of Geek. “We have a whole universe of ape stories that we would like to still be telling. We wanted to complete this conflict in this particular trilogy, but we’ve got a world of stories left to tell, if the public is gracious enough to ask us to do so.”
Each of these new Planet of the Apes movies has had a three year gap in between, and so fans should not expect another movie until 2020 at the absolute earliest.