During this past weekend's “Channel of the Apes” event on the Fox Movie Channel, Fox Chairman Tom Rothman made a surprise announcement to the ape-faithful, saying: “We are very close at Fox on a new Apes script.  This one of a kind prequel story set before the first movie marks a return to the social thematics that marked the first one, but with an entirely contemporary setting, Earth 2009.”


A search of ape-centric and film development Websites brings up a recent article on CHUD about a movie script entitled Genesis: Apes.  Written by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, Genesis: Apes is a remake of sorts of Conquest of the Planet of the Apes, which was a “prequel” to the original POTA.  Released in 1972 Conquest was the 4th POTA film, and the most violent as it traced the rise of the ape civilization and the revolution that left the hairier primates in charge.


According to CHUD there are number of key differences between Conquest and Genesis, though the key ape protagonist in each film is known as Caesar.  In Conquest however, in a massive temporal paradox Caesar’s parents are the 40th Century talking apes Cornelius and Zira, while in Genesis Caesar is the result of genetic engineering.  Also Conquest was set in a dystopian fascist America (in 1991), so the apes overthrew a corrupt authoritarian regime, while Genesis: Apes is set in the present.


If the Genesis: Apes script does get greenlit, it will resurrect a franchise that many thought Tim Burton killed with his lackluster 2001 remake of the original Planet of the Apes.