James Franco Unlikely To Return For ‘Apes’ Sequel

Last year James Franco played second fiddle to Andy Serkis’ Cesar in Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and it worked for the rebooted franchise. As a sequel was announced after its box office success was set, it was obvious that audiences were invested in the journey of the lovable Cesar.

For Franco, who has his own series to lead up with Oz: The Great And The Powerful, the door was still slightly open for his return but it doesn’t look likely.

With Dawn of the Planet of the Apes introducing the apes taking over the planet, the role humans will take in the next film is said to be less significant than in the first. Mix that in with director Rupert Wyatt’s departure from the series, and it looks like this will be Andy Serkis’ series to rule. Franco caught up with MTV to speak about his smaller projects when the Apes franchise was brought up.

Franco elaborated on his role and the question of his return:

“I was going to be a small part of the next one. There was a moment when Rupert Wyatt was going to direct the second one. A lot of the human characters that were in the first movie were dead in the sequel that Rupert was going to direct. But there was one scene, between Caesar and my character, maybe even just like on a video that was left behind, but then a lot of things happened, like [former Fox co-chairman] Tom Rothman who was a big part of the first movie, left. Now Rupert’s not a part of it so I don’t know. My guess is I won’t be in it. Nobody’s talked to me since Rupert left.”

Reeves’ sequel is still in pre-production, so there’s a slight chance James Franco may reprise his role to tie up loose ends, but with Franco’s schedule already locked up for the next year, even if the always-on-the-run actor finds time to make a cameo, the fact that he hasn’t heard from the studio yet doesn’t look very promising.

The next installment of the series is said to hit theaters in May of 2014. Are you excited for the next sequel in the Apes film?