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Planet of the Apes - Pierre Boulle - NEW

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Planet of the Apes - Pierre Boulle  -  NEW

Planet of the Apes - Pierre Boulle- New Book

The Novel that the Movies and TV series Planet of the Apes was based on

The main events of the book are placed in a frame story, in which Jinn and Phyllis, a couple out on a pleasure cruise in a spaceship, find a message in a bottle floating in space. The message inside the bottle is the testimony of a man, Ulysse Mérou, who has written down his story in the hope that someone else, somewhere, will find it. Ulysse begins by explaining that he was a friend of Professor Antelle, a genius scientist on Earth, who invented a spaceship that could travel at nearly the speed of light. Ulysse, the professor, and a physicist named Levain fly off in this ship to explore outer space. They travel to the nearest star system that the professor theorized might be capable of life, the red sun Betelgeuse, which would take them about 350 years to reach. Due to time dilation, however, the trip seems to the travelers only to last two years.

They arrive at the distant solar system and find that it contains an Earth-like planet, which they name Soror (Latin for sister), "because of its resemblance to our Earth." They land on the planet and discover that they can breathe the air, drink the water, and eat the local vegetation. They soon encounter other human beings on the planet, although these others act as primitively as chimpanzees and destroy the clothing of the three astronauts. They are captured by the primitive humans and stay with them for a few hours. At the end of this time, they are startled to see a hunting party in the forest, consisting of gorillas, orangutans, and chimpanzees using guns and machines. The apes wear human clothing identical to that of 20th-century Earth, except that they wear gloves instead of shoes on their prehensile feet. The hunting party shoots several of the humans for sport, including Levain, and capture others, including Ulysse.

Ulysse is taken off to the apes' city, which looks exactly the same as a human city from 20th-century Earth, except that some smaller furniture exists for the use of the chimpanzees. While most of the humans captured by the hunting party are sold for manual labor, the protagonist is sent to a research facility. There, the apes perform experiments on the humans similar to Pavlov's conditioning experiments on dogs, and Ulysse proves his intelligence by failing to be conditioned, and by speaking and drawing geometrical figures. Ulysse is adopted by one of the researchers, Zira, a female chimpanzee, who begins to teach him the apes' language. He learns from her all about the ape planet. Eventually, he is freed from his cage, and meets Zira's fiancé, Cornélius, a respected young scientist. With Cornélius' help, he makes a speech in front of the ape President and numerous representatives, and is given specially tailored clothing. He tours the city and learns about the apes' civilization and history. The apes have a very ancient society, but their origins are lost in time. Their technology and culture have progressed slowly through the centuries because each generation, for the most part, with what is recognized as characteristically ape-like behaviour, imitates those of the past. The society is divided between the violent gorillas, the pedantic and conservative orangutans, and the intellectual chimpanzees.

Although Ulysse's chimpanzee patrons Zira and Cornélius are convinced of his intelligence, the society's leading orangutan scientists believe that he is faking his understanding of language, because their philosophy will not allow the possibility of intelligent human beings. Ulysse falls in love with a primitive human female, Nova, whom he had met in the forest at the beginning of his visit to the planet. He impregnates her and thus proves that he is the same species as the primitive humans, which lowers his standing in the eyes of many of the apes. However, their derision turns to fear with a discovery in a distant archaeological dig and an analysis of memory in some human brains. Evidence is uncovered that fills in the missing history of the apes. In the distant past, the planet was ruled by human beings who built a technological society and enslaved apes to perform their manual labor. Over time the humans became more and more dependent upon the apes, until eventually they became so lazy and degenerate that they were overthrown by their ape servants and fell into the primitive state in which our protagonist found them.

While some of the apes reject this evidence, others - in particular, an old orangutan scientist, Dr. Zaius - take it as a sign that the humans are a threat and must be exterminated. Ulysse learns of this, and escapes from the planet with his wife and new-born son, returning to Earth in the professor's spaceship. Again, the trip takes several centuries, but only a relative time of a few years to the protagonist. Ulysse lands on Earth, over 700 years after he had originally left it, and lands outside the city of Paris. However, once outside the ship, he discovers that Earth is now ruled by intelligent apes just like the planet from which he has fled (this is where his story on paper ends). He immediately leaves Earth in his ship, writes his story, places it in a bottle, and launches it into space for someone to find. It is at this point in the story that we discover that Jinn and Phyllis, the couple who found the bottle, are chimpanzees. Jinn and Phyllis dismiss Ulysse's story, saying that a human would not have the intelligence to write the story.

Planet of the Apes Adaptions:

Films

Planet of the Apes (1968) was a groundbreaking science fiction film based on Boulle's novel, and was directed by Franklin J. Schaffner and starred Charlton Heston. It was the vision of producer Arthur P. Jacobs, who commissioned Rod Serling to write the script, but the final version would be written by Michael Wilson. Jacobs enlisted Heston (who enlisted Schaffner) well before any production deal was made, and Heston's star status was instrumental in gaining support for the film. They gained the support of Mort Abrahams after producing a short film demo which showed that the makeups (initially created by Ben Nye, Sr., not to be confused with the design by John Chambers for the actual film) could be convincing enough not to appear funny, as most "monkey suits" up to that time had. In the English-language films, the apes are insulted when called "monkeys," but in the original book, no insult is possible because, as noted above, singes refers to both apes and monkeys.

There were four sequels to Schaffner's film, which also deviate from the finer points of the storyline in Boulle's book:

* Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970)
* Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971)
* Conquest of the Planet of the Apes (1972)
* Battle for the Planet of the Apes (1973)

The 1968 film was reimagined in 2001 by Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes. Fox and director Scott Frank are planning another reboot focusing on the character of Caesar.

Television series

* Planet of the Apes (1974)
* Return to the Planet of the Apes (animated) (1975)

Novels

Original novel

* Planet of The Apes ("Monkey Planet") by Pierre Boulle 1963

Original film adaptations

* Beneath the Planet of the Apes by Michael Avallone
* Escape from the Planet of the Apes by Jerry Pournelle
* Conquest of the Planet of the Apes by John Jakes
* Battle for the Planet of the Apes by David Gerrold

Film adaptations and prequels to the 2001 version

* Planet of the Apes by William Thomas Quick 2001
* Planet of the Apes: The Fall by William Thomas Quick 2002
* Planet of the Apes: Colony by William Thomas Quick 2003
* Planet of the Apes: Junior Novelization by John Whitman 2001
* Resistance (Planet of the Apes) by John Whitman 2002
* Force (Planet of the Apes) by John Whitman 2002

Graphic novel

* Planet of the Apes: Movie Adaptation by Scott Allie
* Planet of the Apes: The Human War by Ian Edginton
* Planet of the Apes: Old Gods by Ian Edginton
* Planet of the Apes: Blood Lines by Dan Abnett & Ian Edginton

Television series adaptations

* Planet of the Apes #1 - Man The Fugitive by George Alec Effinger
* Planet of the Apes #2 - Escape to Tomorrow by George Alec Effinger
* Planet of the Apes #3 - Journey into Terror by George Alec Effinger
* Planet of the Apes #4 - Lord of the Apes by George Alec Effinger

Animated series adaptations

* Return to the Planet of the Apes #1 by William Arrow [ William Rotsler ]
* Return to the Planet of the Apes #2 by William Arrow [ Donald J. Pfeil ]
* Return to the Planet of the Apes #3 by William Arrow [ William Rotsler ]

About the Author Pierre Boulle

Born Pierre-François-Marie-Louis Boulle in Avignon, France, Boulle was baptised and raised a Roman Catholic, although later in life he would be agnostic. He studied and later became an engineer. Then, from 1936 to 1939, he worked as a technician on British rubber plantations in Malaya. While there he met a Frenchwoman who was separated from her husband. She was to become the love of his life whom he would write tender love letters. She later chose to return to her husband, a French official. During World War II she and her husband escaped into Malaysia and one of her children died in the process. Boulle would later meet her after the war, and they enjoyed a platonic friendship.

At the outbreak of World War II, Boulle enlisted with the French army in French Indochina. After German troops occupied France, he joined the Free French Mission in Singapore. During the war he was a supporter of Charles de Gaulle.Boulle served as a secret agent under the name Peter John Rule and helped the resistance movement in China, Burma, and French Indochina. In 1943, he was captured by the Vichy France loyalists on the Mekong River and was subjected to severe hardship and forced labour. He was later made a chevalier of the Légion d'Honneur and decorated with the Croix de Guerre and the Médaille de la Résistance. He described his experiences in the war in the non-fiction My Own River Kwai. After the war he would keep in touch with his war comrades for the rest of his life.For a while after the war, Boulle returned to work in the rubber industry, but in 1949 [2] he moved back to Paris and began to write. While in Paris, too poor to afford his own flat, he lived in a hotel until his recently widowed sister Madeleine allowed him to move into her large apartment. She had a daughter whom Pierre helped raise, but plans for him to officially adopt the girl never materialized. He could never bring himself to leave this family and form another one.

While in Paris, Boulle used his war experiences in writing Le Pont de la rivière Kwaï (1952; The Bridge over the River Kwai), which became a multi-million-copy worldwide bestseller, winning the French "Prix Sainte-Beuve". The book was a semi-fictional story based on the real plight of Allied POWs forced to build a 415-km (258-mile) railway that passed over the bridge, and which became known as the "Death Railway". 16,000 prisoners and 100,000 Asian conscripts died during construction of the line. His character of Lt-Col. Nicholson was not based on the real Allied senior officer at the Kwai bridges, Philip Toosey, but was reportedly an amalgam of his memories of collaborating French officers. David Lean made The Bridge over the River Kwai into a motion picture that won several 1957 Oscars, including the Best Picture, and Best Actor for Alec Guinness. Boulle himself won the award for Best Adapted Screenplay despite not having written the screenplay and, by his own admission, not even speaking English. (He gave what is said to be the shortest acceptance speech in Academy Award history, the single word "Merci".) Boulle had been credited with the screenplay because the film's actual writers, Carl Foreman and Michael Wilson, had been blacklisted as communist sympathizers. Pierre Boulle was neither a Socialist nor a Communist. The Motion Picture Academy added Foreman's and Wilson's names to the award in 1984.

In 1963, following several other reasonably successful novels, Pierre Boulle published his other famous novel, Planet of the Apes. The novel was highly praised and given such reviews as this example from England's Guardian newspaper; "Classic science fiction...full of suspense and satirical intelligence." In the year 2500 a group of astronauts, including journalist Ulysse Merou, voyage to a planet in the star system of Betelgeuse. They land to discover a bizarre world where intelligent apes are the Master Race and humans are reduced to savages: caged in zoos, used in laboratory experiments and hunted for sport. The story of Ulysse's capture, his struggle to survive, and the shattering climax as he uncovers the horrific truth about the 'planet of the apes' is gripping and fantastic. Yet the novel is also a wry parable on science, evolution and the relationship between man and animal." In 1968 this story was made into an Oscar-winning film, starring Charlton Heston, which inspired four sequels, one television series, an animated series and a 2001 remake of the original title by Tim Burton. The film series have become cult classics with movie goers throughout the world. Pierre Boulle believed his novel could not be made into a film, yet he was taken completely by surprise by the success and impact of the film throughout the world. He wrote a sequel script for the film titled Planet of the Men. The producers of the original film turned his script down and named the second film, Beneath the Planet of the Apes. This sequel, which was released in 1970, was also very successful. This film was followed by Escape from the Planet of the Apes in 1971. Then came Conquest of the Planet of the Apes in 1972. The last of the sequels was Battle for the Planet of the Apes in 1973. In September 1973 the original Planet of the Apes film was first aired on network television. The marketing of toys and other products relating to the film series skyrocketed at this time creating an 'Apemania' craze. In June 1974, Marvel comics also released a magazine based on the novel and film called Planet of the Apes. By September 1974 Planet of the Apes had become a television series. In 1975 an animated Return to the Planet of the Apes series was shown on television.

 

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