New ‘Planet of the Apes’ Movie in the Works From ‘Maze Runner’ Director Wes Ball

Disney is expanding the “Planet of the Apes.” The studio has signed “Maze Runner” director Wes Ball to helm a new movie for the franchise.

On an earnings call in August, CEO Bob Iger stressed that the classic franchise is a project that the studio plans to reboot as soon as possible, given the recent success of its previous films. Though some projects within the Fox pipeline have gone through the pre-production process, this would mark the first major IP from the Fox library that Disney is developing on its own since the Fox-Disney merger.

The most recent trilogy (ending with 2017’s “War for the Planet of the Apes”) was a big box office success and earned some of the franchise’s best reviews, dating back to the original 1968 film starring Charlton Heston.

Previously, Disney was forced to put Ball’s adaptation of “Mouse Guard” into turnaround as part of the fallout of the merger. At the time, the studio said the movie didn’t fit into its plan for the projects it had inherited from Fox. Although the film never found a home, Disney still saw Ball as a rising talent, eventually eyeing him for the “Planet of the Apes” position.

Ball is repped by Paradigm and the Gotham Group.

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