One of the more striking images of this summer’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was one that dominated much of the marketing campaign: that close-up of Caesar’s mug, scowling and sporting war paint. It cut an intimidating figure, and the use of the paint was a nice, subtle way to remind audiences that the apes have come a long way in creating their own culture since first getting their intelligence jump-started in 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Looking at this stunning batch of Apes concept art, it’s clear that the war paint was an element that the filmmakers responded to strongly as well.
The concept art was created by the Aaron Sims Company. They worked on both Dawn and Rise, collaborating with Weta Digital to design the various ape characters. On Rise, they “sculpted a bust for Caesar to ensure a hyper-realistic feel,” which you can see below.
On Dawn, their work involved working on “aging the apes and creating the apes’ ceremonial look, which includes face paint and other ornamentation taken from nature.” And here’s where their stuff gets truly gorgeous. The words “suitable for framing” do come to mind.
I love that so much of the concept art is so active. Clearly, “being a deer” is not a lucrative career path if you’re living in the apes neck of the woods.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes opened last month and followed the surprise success of Rise, taking in $190 million domestically and nearly half a billion worldwide. Given that, a third film seems pretty much inevitable. Which we’re okay with, since we quite enjoyed the first two (read Brent’s Dawn review right here). Fox hasn’t announced an official release date for Dawn on Blu-ray and DVD, but you can pre-order it here.