Twitter reacts to ‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ Black Lives Matter imagery 

Does this ape in a blue vest represent Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson? (Photo source: publicity/poster image War for the Planet of the Apes released by 20th Century Fox)

It seems it’s getting harder to enjoy a good sci-fi movie without racist undertones. The latest issue has arisen from the upcoming installment of the Planet of the Apes series. In War For the Planet of the Apes, actor Woody Harrelson plays the character of the Colonel whose appearance and demeanor reminded many of a neo-Nazi skinhead. The movie is about a war between species, however, in today’s heated racial climate a simple fantasy film, for many, seems to be racially coded messages. This is apparent to some in publicity photos that feature one of the apes dressed in a blue vest similar to one worn by Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson at rallies.

Photo credit: DeRay Mckesson’s Facebook (

The ape wearing the vest is in front of a large crowd of apes and is the only ape in human clothing. The imagery was not lost on many Twitter users including Mckesson, who posted the following to Twitter:

After a backlash by some, Mckesson deleted the post from Twitter but that did not stop other Twitter users from sounding off:

Mo Barnes
Mo Barnes

Maurice "Mo" Barnes is a graduate of Morehouse College and Political Scientist based in Atlanta. Mo is also a Blues musician. He has been writing for Rolling Out since 2014. Whether it means walking through a bloody police shooting to help a family find justice or showing the multifaceted talent of the Black Diaspora I write the news.

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