Video Interviews

Owen Teague and Wes Ball Break Down a Scene From Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes

The star and director of the film break down the preparation and inspiration behind a crucial, exciting scene that showcases the character work and special effects wizardry in the film.

by | May 9, 2024 | Comments


The most recent reboot of the Planet of the Apes film franchise was a rousing success, with the last installment, War for the Planet of the Apes, earning the best reviews of the series to date. Needless to say, whoever took on the challenge of following that film with a new entry had some pretty big shoes to fill.

That job went to Wes Ball, who is no stranger to dystopian science fiction, having helmed the Maze Runner franchise, and a crop of new stars, since the story in Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes takes place hundreds of years after the events of War. Owen Teague stars as Noa, the young chimpanzee who, along with a feral human girl (Freya Allan) he befriends, seeks to lead a resistance against a tyrannical ape king (Kevin Durand).

Ahead of the film’s release, Ball and Teague broke down a crucial early scene in the film, showcasing the personalities of and relationships between the primary ape characters, as well as the preparation and inspiration behind its dazzling visual effects and breathtaking action cinematography.

Owen Teague: Everything from ape school helped me in this scene. [laughs] Ape school was crucial. We had our movement coordinator/teacher Alain Gauthier, who led us through a lot of physical training and physical character work to develop these characters, and not just help us with the ape formats, but build specific bodies, basically, for us, and work with our voices, and make sure it was all integrated, because I think the craziest thing about this whole process for me, just in terms of the craft of acting, how much it made me remember that it’s all connected. Like, if your body and your voice aren’t working in tandem with your brain, you don’t have a performance.

Every little thing of how Noa walks, how Noa climbs, Noa’s relationship with his friends — that is the character.

Noa (played by Owen Teague) in 20th Century Studios' KINGDOM OF THE PLANET OF THE APES

(Photo by ©20th Century Studios)

Wes Ball: Yeah, and you’ll see it throughout the movie. As you grow into this kind of confident character, starting as this naive young adult, you see your posture changing. Your whole body language begins to change. It’s real subtle stuff that works.

Teague: The body language changes, the voice even changes a bit. So part of ape school for me was finding where in the movie Noa was internally and reflecting that in the body.

Watch the video for the full interview with Owen Teague and Wes Ball.

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