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Elon Musk Inspired The Villainous Bonobo Of ‘Planet Of The Apes,’ Kevin Durand Confirms

The new ‘Planet of the Apes’ film will introduce a villainous bonobo named Proximus Caesar.

Kevin Durand spoke of his role as Proximus Caesar in a recent chat with the ‘Inside Total Film’ podcast. He confirmed that his bonobo’s traits were partly inspired by Elon Musk. He said after interviewers noted the similarities:

“I mean, even with the bonobo face, they compare me to Elon Musk. I get Elon Musk all the time, actually; it’s very funny. People approach me with a look in their eye where I realize they are not meeting an actor that they like, it’s something bigger. But the fact that it comes through even when I’m an ape is fantastic!”

The actor explained how he modeled the ape after the billionaire:

“I did look at really charismatic speakers — I watched [life coach] Tony Robbins quite a bit, Elon, Arnold Schwarzenegger giving his governor speeches. Just these humans who, without trying, you just have to watch them as they hold so much power and charisma.”

The Villainous Ape In The Upcoming Film

The trailer showed Proximus Caesar using his rediscovery of electricity to gain power over other apes after its downfall with humanity in the upcoming film.

Director Wes Ball gave more context on the plot and the character in a December interview with Entertainment Weekly:

“To apes that have forgotten about all these things, that’s like a magic power. So, they’re experimenting with it. I don’t even think you can call him a villain. I would call him an adversary. You understand him, you can relate to him in a way. It’s an interesting character who isn’t just a mustache-twirling cutout.”

‘Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes’ picks up 300 years after the events of the reboot trilogy starring Andy Serkis. It hits the theaters on May 10.

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