Sometimes, you find news items in unexpected places. Take, for instance, this interview James Franco did with MTV. On the surface, the interview is about Franco’s recent directorial effort, a video for defunct rock band R.E.M.’s track Blue and his experience working with Lindsay Lohan on the clip in particular.
Then at the end of the interview, MTV asks him a throwaway question about his involvement with the sequel, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Franco’s short answer calls into question not only his reprising his role from Rise of the Planet of the Apes, but also the path the franchise reboot will take from here.
MTV: Are you going to be making an appearance in “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”?
Franco: I was going to be a small part of the next one. There was a moment when Rupert Wyatt was going to direct the second one. A lot of the human characters that were in the first movie were dead in the sequel that Rupert was going to direct. But there was one scene, between Caesar and my character, maybe even just like on a video that was left behind, but then a lot of things happened, like [former Fox co-chairman] Tom Rothman who was a big part of the first movie, left. Now Rupert’s not a part of it so I don’t know. My guess is I won’t be in it. Nobody’s talked to me since Rupert left.
One fact you can get from that exchange was that Franco was going to have a small part in the sequel when Rupert Wyatt was set to direct it, and now that he’s gone Franco’s involvement in uncertain to unlikely. But you can also pick up a sense of uncertainty on the future of the franchise by Franco mentioning that two people who aided in its success, Wyatt and Tom Rothman, are no longer involved. Something for those of you who loved Rise to think about.