Video: Hey, who's up for another "Planet of the Apes" movie?

It’s our first slow news night in two weeks and the earlier nerds-only thread seems to have gone over well, so let’s take advantage and double down. In fact, there’s a surprise connection here to “Lord of the Rings”: Andy Serkis, who played Gollum in LOTR, stars as the ape super-villain Caesar. And there’s a thematic connection in both cases to “Jersey Shore.” Whereas LOTR is the tale of a merry band of freaks led by a dwarf, this one’s the story of a pack of mutant primates rampaging across America. QED.

Hard to imagine a POTA prequel that jettisons nuclear war as the catalyst for Earth’s takeover by the apes, but the trailer has me intrigued. It looks to be, for all intents and purposes, a zombie movie: Killer beasts unleashed on mankind via a biological catastrophe and propagating themselves until they take over the planet. (Again, “Jersey Shore.”) That’s not exclusively a zombie theme — it’s also the plot of “Gremlins” and the backstory for “The Terminator” — but zombie flicks are best at exploiting the concept’s menace. (Although…) I’m keen to see what they do with it in this one, especially now that they’re armed to the teeth with F/X possibilities. Exit question: Er, what’s James Franco doing in a straightforward monster movie like this? Is there a way to play the “scientist who singlehandedly destroys the world” character ironically?