War for the Planet of the Apes: Watch the first teaser trailer

The first trailer for War for the Planet of the Apes landed today, and it's likely to send a cold shiver down your spine.

In the 30-second trailer, a shadowy ape - possibly the an older version of Caesar (Andy Serkis), the previous films' protagonist - stands motionless in a snowstorm, as a gravelly voice-over announces: "You must go... before the fighting begins... I am sorry... War has begun."

Slated to be released on July 14, 2017, the new film is the third instalment in the rebooted franchise, following 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes and 2014's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, which was praised by The Telegraph's Tim Robey for its "intelligence" and "extraordinary special effects."

Serkis is joined in the cast by Woody Harrelson, who plays the film's villain, a human called The Colonel. Gabriel Chavarria (Prime Suspect) will appear as a new character called Preacher, while Karin Konoval, Terry Notary and Judy Greer will reprise their roles as three of Caesar's fellow apes, Maurice, Rocket and Cornelia.

In a 2014 interview with SlashFilm, director Matt Reeves hinted at the plot of the forthcoming movie: "As this story continues, we know that war is not avoided by the end of [the previous film]... It's going to be an epic story... The first film was very much about [Caesar's] rise from humble beginnings to being a revolutionary.

The second movie was about having to rise to the challenge of being a great leader in the most difficult of times. This is going to be the story that is going to cement his status as a seminal figure in ape history, and sort of leads to an almost biblical status. He is going to become like a mythic ape figure, like Moses."

The first footage is due to be screened at the 2016 New York Comic-Con, and will hopefully be released online shortly afterwards.

- Daily Telegraph UK

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