Despite its awful title, Rise of the Planet of the Apes was actually one of the biggest surprises of 2011. Anchored by a brilliant motion capture performance by Andy Serkis, a well-developed script by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, and solid direction by Rupert Wyatt, the movie was given rave reviews and was a box office smash, pulling in $481 million globally on a modest $93 million budget. The success led 20th Century Fox to almost immediately green light a sequel that would follow the continuing development of Caesar and his ape army, but now it's looking like the project may lose its director.
Fox declined to comment on the story, but if it's true then they will have to work quickly to find a replacement. The good news is that because Rise of the Planet of the Apes was so successful they could have a chance to rope in some serious talent. The studio is apparently very happy with the sequel script from Jaffa and Silver, and we'll just have to wait and see what the next step is. Outside of the Planet of the Apes franchise, Wyatt is also attached to Agent 13 with Charlize Theron and has shown an interest in Londongrad with Michael Fassbender, so the filmmaker probably won't be off the big screen for too long, even if this project falls through.