If you’ve read my recent review on Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, you know what that I loved the Matt Reeves-directed film. It took the themes from Rise and the previous Apes films and created something that made you connect with is simian stars in a way that’s never been done before. You fully believed that Caesar, Koba, and the others were real and even more than that, they were almost human. The work that WETA did with the CGI to create the apes and the environments is a spectacular feat that’s sure to get them recognized at the Oscars; as well as set the bar for other special fx studios.
When I got my hands on The Art of the Films Dawn and Rise of Planet of the Apes from Titan Books, I knew that I was going on a journey that would explore these rich films and gain deeper knowledge into their production; I got that and so
much more. The book book is written by Sharon Gosling and Adam Newell. They serve as your narrators, as you
explore these incredible films. Matt Reeves includes the foreword for the book and talks about his love for the original films. He wanted to be an ape when he was a child, so getting the chance to direct Andy Serkis and the rest of the mocap actors was a dream come true.
The book is split into two parts between the making of Rise and Dawn. Throughout the entire book you explore the concept art and stills from the films, but this is much more than that. This is a making-of book. There are interviews from writers Amanda Silver and Rick Jaffa, actor Andy Serkis, directors of both films Rupert Wyatt and Reeves and so much more. Each chapter serves as a section in the films, leading up to their completion. This book serves as a visual and literary documentary to the movies.
I’ve watched the behind-the-scenes production for Rise and loved it. You got to see the mocap actors film the scene on The
Golden Gate bridge and WETA’s fantastic work on bringing Caesar and others to life. This book is the perfect companion to that BTS, as well as when Dawn makes it’s way to blu-ray.
One of my favorite sections of the book was pertaining to the posters for Rise. They went with a propaganda vibe and instead of focusing on the human cast, they decided to center all of the art on Caesar as the driving force. Unbeknownst to me until I read the book, there was also an early poster for Dawn that was actually just concept art from Rise tweaked a bit. It served as our slider for the film here at DFAT before the first official poster was released!
I would give The Art of the Films Dawn and Rise of Planet of the Apes 10 outta 10 stars. This was one of the best Making Of books I’ve ever read. I was already a huge fan of the Apes movies and this only solidified my love for them. Huge thanks to Titan Books for giving us the chance to read the book and make sure you all order a copy for yourself by visiting their website!