Cliffhangers that never got resolved

‘Planet of The Apes’ (2001)

The monkey vs. man war rages on in new feature films, but less celebrated is Tim Burton’s 2001 The Planet of the Apes, where Mark Wahlberg crash-lands on a planet populated by intelligent apes, after he travels through a time portal attempting to rescue a space pod piloted by his chimpanzee. A man’s love for his monkey knows no bounds, as any viewer of BJ and The Bear can tell you.

In the end, Wahlberg, pursued by Tim Roth’s villainous General Thade, goes back through time and returns to the present via his chimp’s pod, landing in Washington, DC. To his shock, he discovers that what was once the Lincoln Memorial is now dedicated to Thade. This means … well, we never really find out, as the Ape Police (who, sadly, never got their own spinoff film) arrive, and that’s it for the film. So, what happened? Did Thade find a way to go farther back in time than Wahlberg, effectively beating Davidson home, changing history into a timeline more beneficial for those who love bananas? We don’t know, because nobody ever told us.

There probably could’ve been a sequel, but Burton, when asked about helming one, remarked he would sooner leap out of a window. Most aggravatingly, he was apparently handed a script and, when he told Fox how much it would cost to film, they acted like he was a “crazy, overspending, crazy person.” When the director chooses an uncontrolled jump to concrete waiting below over dealing with a studio again for a sequel, that’s probably not a good sign. As far as Fox goes, despite earning over $360 million at the box office, they chose to forget the film ever happened, instead waiting a decade to reboot the franchise. That effort did much better and was probably for the best, unless you were Mark Wahlberg or his poor chimpanzee.