'War for the Planet of the Apes' looks 'insanely realistic,' Andy Serkis says


War for the Planet of the Apes has a lot to live up to in terms of visual effects, but it doesn’t look like fans will be disappointed. Following in the acclaimed footsteps of 2014’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the latest film in the series is pushing the envelope further. A new featurette, released Wednesday by 20th Century Fox, highlights the upcoming movie’s groundbreaking technology and the captivating results.

Director Matt Reeves, star Andy Serkis, co-producer Ryan Stafford, and Joe Letteri, senior VFX supervisor, all discuss the film’s visual effects in the new video. Not surprisingly, they have glowing comments to share about their work, but the footage backs up these statements. The featurette includes scenes from the film that proves just how real the fictional world appears.

“It looks insanely realistic,” Serkis says in the video. “It’s just such a brilliant technology, and I’ve embraced it and I actively want to push the boundaries so that this movie is the most thrilling on every single level.”

The actor delves further into the process, explaining what it is like to play a role that requires motion capture.

“You’re not just standing in for the role until the magic’s done later, and you’re not just representing the character; you are the character for real,” Serkis says.

We get a chance to see him in his gray motion-capture suit, shooting scenes as his ape leader character Caesar. The others explain that it takes more than just technology to evoke the emotion that he and the rest of the cast do. Reeves describes his star as an “incredible actor.”

“That can’t be done just by someone in a gray suit that’s just doing the body movements,” Stafford said.

They do not downplay the importance of the technology, though. Speaking of Weta, the company responsible for the film’s visual effects, Stafford describes the team as “the best.”

“Weta is creating pure artistry for us,” he says. “All of those details that make the illusion complete, Weta has pushed that further.”

We will see the work in all of its glory when War for the Planet of the Apes hits theaters on July 14.

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