'Rise of the Planet of the Apes': An Oscar push for Andy Serkis
Andy Serkis' performance as the sentient chimpanzee Caesar in this summer's "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" is getting a supporting actor push from 20th Century Fox. If he is nominated, Serkis will be something of a digital barrier-breaker in the Oscar race — he delivered the role with the help of visual-effects artists at Weta Digital, using the same performance-capture technique that helped create the tall blue aliens of "Avatar."
Serkis spoke with the Los Angeles Times from the New Zealand set of "The Hobbit," where he's reprising his role of Gollum from the "Lord of the Rings" movies and serving as a second unit director.
"Every single actor’s performance on screen is enhanced by a team of other people’s work," Serkis said. "Editing choices, the take that’s chosen, the music that plays underneath a particular scene, the makeup that you’re wearing, it’s all collaborative. There isn’t a single shot in any movie which isn’t a team effort. If you want a pure actor’s performance, then you have to go to the stage."
For a glimpse of what Serkis' performance looked like before it was digitally enhanced, see the video below. For more on his work and Fox's campaign, see our story in Saturday's newspaper.
— Rebecca Keegan
Photo: Andy Serkis as Caesar and costar John Lithgow in "Rise of the Planet of the Apes." Credit: Weta Digital/20th Century Fox.