The man behind playing Caesar in ‘War for the Planet of the Apes’

Don’t you hate it when you go through all the trouble of genetically modifying a species, only to regret it when they turn against you? It happens. Specifically, it happens in “War for the Planet of the Apes.” Chris hung out with the cast to talk about the epic film.

Some of the stars you’ll recognize. Some? Not so much.

“War for the Planet of the Apes” is the third movie in the franchise, and if the title didn’t give it away, there’s a war brewing between apes and humans.

Andy Serkis is back as Caesar — and when it comes to motion capture performance, Andy is the guy. You’ve seen him as King Kong, Gollum in “Lord of the Rings” and supreme leader Snoke in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

Chris Van Vliet: “In between movies, is it hard to get back into Caesar or does he just come right back to you?”

Andy Serkis: “It was fairly easy for me because I’ve lived with him for so long now. I’ve played him all through his life, so I know him intimately.”

Caesar is the head ape and he’s out for revenge against the Colonel, played by Woody Harrelson, who killed his family.

Woody Harrellson: “The Caesar character that everyone has come to know and love is pitted against the Colonel and his soldiers, and they are definitely trying eliminate the apes and the apes are trying to survive.”

Woody Harrellson (as The Colonel): “There are times when it is necessary to abandon our humanity to save humanity.”

The CGI is unlike anything you’ve seen before. In fact, it’s so realistic that it’s easy to forget that there are humans in gray suits acting it all out.

Chris Van Vliet: “I’ve been talking about how you should be nominated for an Oscar for playing Caesar. This is certainly the role where it should happen. Why is this getting overlooked?”

Andy Serkis: “It’s a strange one really. I think people have a much easier understanding when an actor puts lots of makeup on and is completely disguised and you can’t recognize them.”

The movie is much more emotional than you’d think, especially considering the main characters are apes. That was director Matt Reeves’ plan from the start.

Chris Van Vliet: “Andy’s obviously the best at this, he’s so good. Off-camera after you say cut, is he still Caesar?”

Matt Reeves: “He’s so mean. No! He’s incredible. Here’s the thing, people talk about him like, ‘Oh, he’s so good at this.’ The ‘this’ he’s good at is acting. The performance capture, that’s just the technology that records a performance and his performance is crazy good.”

“War for the Planet of the Apes” is in theaters July 14.

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