“Severance” Star Dichen Lachman Joins “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes”

Dichen Lachman was perfectly cast in Severance as Ms. Casey, a fully severed (in the series’ parlance) employee of Lumon Industries who ran the nefarious company’s Wellness Sessions. Imposingly calm and deeply connected to Lumon’s chilling strategy for creating the most efficient and pliable workforce, to be brought to Ms. Casey’s office for a Wellness Session was one of the series’ most unsettling events. It would turn out, by the end of the excellent first season, that Lachman’s role in Severance was key to the entire season’s mystery.

Now, The Hollywood Reporter has the scoop that Lachman is trading in her corporate attire and impenetrable demeanor for director Wes Ball’s upcoming Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, which posits a world where humans are not only not in control, but they’ve been overtaken by numerous societies of apes.

The latest Apes film follows the events in the third and final film in the rebooted trilogy, War for the Planet of the Apes, in which The Batman director Matt Reeves delivered the stunning conclusion to the story of Caesar (Andy Serkis), the chimpanzee who led his fellow apes into a hard-won independence from human beings. In Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes, the story will pick up many years after Caesar’s final battle with the human world, with various ape societies using (or contorting) Caesar’s beliefs and efforts to build a just ape society into flourishing empires. Humanity, meanwhile, has been reduced to an even more brutal existence, outmaneuvered, outsmarted, and defeated by the apes.

The apes are hardly a perfect society in this new film, however, as THR reveals the film will focus on one brutal ape leader who enslaves his fellow apes, and a young human woman caught in another ape’s journey to find freedom. The script comes from Josh Friedman, Amanda Silver, Rick Jaffa, and Patrick Aison.

Lachman joins cast members Freya Allen, William H. Macy, Kevin Durand, and Owen Teague. There’s no word yet on who Dichen is playing, but we know she’ll bring the goods. As we mentioned, her role in Severance turned out to be one of the keys to the entire saga, with her connection to Adam Scott’s Mark revealing one of season one’s most crucial mysteries. She’s a star worth watching.

For more on Severance, check out these stories:

“Severance” Production Designer Jeremy Hindle’s Dystopian Office Space

From “Pachinko” to “Severance,” Costume Designers Discuss Their Apple TV Series

Featured image: Dichen Lachman in “Severance,” now streaming on Apple TV+.


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The Credits is an online magazine that tells the story behind the story to celebrate our large and diverse creative community. Focusing on profiles of below-the-line filmmakers, The Credits celebrates the often uncelebrated individuals who are indispensable to the films and TV shows we love.