All movies of any genre are influenced in some ways by the movies that came before them, war movies especially. Kong: Skull Island made no secret of its homages to Apocalypse Now and The Thin Red Line, and War for the Planet of the Apes is attempting a similarly ambitious undertaking. Filmmaker Matt Reeves recently listed all of the movies he’d taken noted on for his Apes film: At Comic Con he said he’d used Platoon, The Thin Red Line, and Apocalypse Now as touchstones, and today he’s listed a few more.

Reeves told Entertainment Weekly that the movies that had some of the greatest impact on War for the Planet of the Apes ended up being the Biblical epics like The Ten Commandments and Ben-Hur.

We watched The Great Escape. We watched Biblical epics, because I really felt like this movie had to have a Biblical aspect to it. We watched Ben-Hur, The Ten Commandments. We didn’t go, like, ‘Let’s take a little bit of this, a little bit of that.’ When you surround yourself with something that feels emotionally right, there are connections that make sense to you that somebody else might not see…[the films] informed the vibe we felt about this thing.

Reeves and his co-writer Mark Bomback were also grateful for the amount of time 20th Century Fox gave them to work on their ideas for the sequel.

They actually gave us time. Mark and I began by doing the thing everybody thinks writers do, but they don’t, because there’s never time. We talked about our lives. We talked about history stories. And then we watched a lot of movies.

EW also debuted a new look at the movie, featuring Woody Harrelson dwarfed by a huge gorilla:

War for the Planet of the Apes hits theaters July 14.

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