Arts & Culture News

Please Keep Your Paws off the Damned Dirty Ape Costume

A new Planet of the Apes movie is upon us and even though Rise of the Planets of the Apes and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes are getting heaped, there have to be some naysayers out there who still insist that all the CGI in the world can't hold a candle to the 1968 original.

The Alamo Drafthouse in Richardson now has the perfect excuse for even the most discerning movie snob to at least step into a theater that's playing the new Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. The theater has one of the original ape costumes sitting in its lobby to greet guests as they head off to learn how mankind will one day be overtaken by their evolutionary brothers-in-arms.

The costume comes from local collector and movie buff Robert Carpenter, who keeps the costume in the lobby of his realty office in Plano.

"It kind of freaks people out sometimes when they walk in," he said with a laugh.

Carpenter, a Drafthouse regular, picked up the costume online from an auction house that sells a stockpile of movie and TV memorabilia each year. His Planet of the Apes outfit only cost him $8,000, which is chimp ... we mean chump ... change compared to the original Maltese Falcon prop that sold for over $4 million at the same auction.

He also owns one of the whips that Harrison Ford cracked on the set of one of the Indiana Jones movies and some storyboards used to block scenes for classic films such as Mel Brooks' Blazing Saddles and My Fair Lady starring Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison.

He doesn't have any major purchases on his radar currently, but he has a dream purchase on his mental radar that he might jump at if it showed up on an auction block.

"Something I think would be really cool to own would be a gadget from a James Bond movie," he said. "Any of those little gadgets like a watch or whatever, that would be really cool."

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Danny Gallagher has been a regular contributor to the Dallas Observer since 2014. He has also written features, essays and stories for MTV, the Chicago Tribune, Maxim, Cracked, Mental_Floss, The Week, CNET and The Onion AV Club.