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BIG-BUDGET: The Great Ape Escape at WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES Prison Set in Richmond


Is it time for the Great Ape Escape at the Prison set built for War for the Planet of the Apes in south Richmond? Filming resumes this week with some daytime shoots at the Tower Rock Armoury used as the Ape prison. And later there will be  a simulated battle that culminates in a massive SPFX explosion of a train oil tanker.


‘The third instalment of the rebooted billion-dollar Planet of the Apes franchise — starring motion-captured Andy Serkis as Ape leader Caesar– started filming in metro Vancouver in mid-October. We first met Caesar as a genetically-enhanced baby chimp living in San Francisco with humans until he is captured and placed in a primate shelter where he leads an ape uprising in Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Ten years later in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, talking chimpanzee Caesar has his own family and is the established leader of an Apes colony in a world where humanity has been virtually wiped out by a simian plague. An unexpected incursion by human survivors leads to civil war among the Apes with Caesar prevailing as King of Apes.


War for the Planet of the Apes takes place some time later with the Apes in prison at the  mercy of the Humans. Woody Harrelson is the Colonel and Steve Zahn a new ape, with local actors Sara Canning and Aleks Paunovics going simian to stand with Caesar.


Directed by Matt Reeves, War For The Planet of the Apes has filmed mainly in studio and at this sprawling south Richmond set so far, with almost a month of night shoots on the prison set before the holiday hiatus. Filming in south Richmond began November 20th and wrapped December 19th, despite an unexpected shutdown in American Thanksgiving week because of the death of Andy Serkis’s mother. But weekend shoots brought production back on schedule and ready for the big battle this month.




Fight Weakness or Perish.



Tower Rock Armoury as Ape Prison.





Night shoot.

First day of filming at this set.

Prison tower under construction

Set under construction


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