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Jason Clarke Signs on for 'Apes' Sequel Set 15 Years After 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes'

Rise of the Planet of the Apes was a surprise hit in 2011, yet it shouldn’t have been such a surprise because director Rupert Wyatt went out of his way to cast legitimate actors, from James Franco and Freida Pinto to the motion-capture CGI wizard Andy Serkis. The sequel seems to want to continue down that path of legitimacy by staying with Serkis and surrounding him with equal talents. 

Jason Clarke, the Australian star of the television series The Chicago Code who stole multiple scenes as a confident, slightly arrogant CIA interrogator in Kathryn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty, has signed on to star in 20th Century Fox’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Let Me In) is on board to direct the sequel after Wyatt walked over the film’s truncated production schedule. 

The trade doesn’t specify who Clarke will play in the sequel, though THR does share a few plot details. There appear to be two storylines unfolding in Dawn. In one, the scientists pick up the pieces after the experiment conducted in the most recent Apes installment almost destroys San Francisco. And in the other narrative, Caesar (Serkis) attempts to maintain control over the ape community, which he now leads. 

Clarke’s star continues to burn bright. In addition to ZDT, he has roles in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby and Roland Emmerich’s White House Down, both in theaters this summer. 

As for Apes, the sequel is racing to meet a May 23, 2014 release date. 

Follow along on Twitter @Sean_OConnell and @Fandango

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