Having revitalised the
Planet Of The Apes
series with the excellent
Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes
, it was perhaps inevitable that Fox would want to hang on to director Rupert Wyatt for the sequel.
Officially titled Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes , the sequel is set to pick up where the last film left off, as the ape-carried virus begins to spread through humankind with disastrous effects, resulting in a global pandemic.
Wyatt had agreed to direct the follow-up, but according to Deadline , he’s having second thoughts due to the film’s extremely tight release date of 23 May 2014. Fox has declined to comment, but if rumours are to be believed, they’ll have to move quickly to find a replacement.
The situation is reminiscent of Gary Ross’s exit from the Hunger Games franchise, having declined the opportunity to direct the second film on account of Lionsgate’s ludicrously tight production schedule. Francis Lawrence, his replacement, also seems unlikely to return for round three for similar reasons.
Time is now very much of the essence for Fox, who are reportedly happy with the script submitted by writers Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver. If Wyatt does jump ship, expect a replacement to be announced sooner rather than later.