Dan Lemmon Interview: ‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ VFX
“It’s been an amazing journey,” states “War for the Planet of the Apes” visual effects supervisor Dan Lemmon during our recent webcam interview (watch the exclusive video above). “It’s something that’s really special, to be able to take characters… from their infancy and watch them grow and change.” Directed by Matt Reeves, “War” is the concluding chapter of the latest “Planet of the Apes” trilogy. The 20th Century Fox release centers on Caesar (Andy Serkis), an ape with superhuman intelligence who must lead his kind in a battle against humans for the sake of their survival.
A VFX veteran with such credits as “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy and “Avatar” (2009) on his resume, Lemmon has watched the art of performance capture technology evolve from its earliest stages. “The collaboration we’ve had with the actors is something that’s been really special,” he divulges, “being able to see where Andy Serkis takes the character, and how he changes Caesar from film to film as he goes through all sorts of different physical and emotional changes. That’s really one of the things that’s magic about performance capture, is being able to collaborate with actors that bring their own take to the characters… and then translate their performances onto digital characters that don’t look anything like them, but emotionally embody everything that the actor did on the set.”
Lemmon won an Oscar earlier this year for his work on “The Jungle Book” (2016). He also contended for “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” (2011) and “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” (2014). He is next working on a live action retelling of Disney’s “The Lion King,” due out in 2019. Can Lemmon pull off his second Oscar win this year? Check out our full interview above for more about his work on “War for the Planet of the Apes.”