Since I often act like a know it all, I have to be perfectly frank here and say, I thought Rise of The Planet of the Apes would barely make its $93 million dollars back at the box office. I thought the premise of the film and the evolution of apes would be lost on the public after one of the great filmmakers of our time, Tim Burton botched the last version. Boy was I wrong.
Not only was Rise of the Planet of the Apes a financial success, (Opening Number one with a $54 Million Dollar opening weekend, and going on to make over $481 million dollars world wide) it was a critical success as well, with review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reporting an 83% “Certified Fresh” rating, and an average rating of 7.1/10, based on 227 reviews.
Any way you slice it, the film was a smash hit and a much needed one for James Franco, who stays in the shallow end of the Hollywood pool more often than he should. Don’t forget, Franco was just coming off a comedically tragic and awful performance as co-host of the 83rd Academy Awards, where he seemed high most of the time, but more likely just didn’t give a fuck. I hate to use such strong language, but that is the only way to explain some of Franco’s career decisions. He’s the only A-Lister in Hollywood who sleeps through college classes while shooting episodes of the Soap-Opera General Hospital in-between. Nonetheless, he proved to be good enough. Somehow none of this has effected his star power or his ability to be the lead in a box office hit. Good for him. Men will do what they can get away with.
And here is more good news for the franchise: Today, 20th century Fox announced a May 23rd, 2014 release date for the sequel and a name, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Andy Serkis is signed on to return as Caesar, but there’s currently no word on who will be joining him from the original cast.
Of course I have been remised not to mention the, lets face it, GREAT Andy Serkis, who became the first man in an animated role to create real buzz and almost be nominated for an Academy Award. I say almost, because all the filmmakers and actors who worked with him in ‘Rise of the Planet of the Apes,’ outwardly petitioned for Andy, who also plays Gollum, to get a nod. He didn’t, but t think those petitions put a crack in that glass ceiling and if Andy Serkis delivers again like he did in the first ‘Planet of the Apes,’ my guess is he will be nominated.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Trailer
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