- "Son...will know...who...was...father. And what...Caesar...did...for us."
- ―Maurice's promise to Caesar before his passing.
Maurice is an evolved Bornean Orangutan and a former circus ape who resided at the San Bruno Primate Shelter with Cornelia, Rocket and Buck. He watched over Caesar and discovered his intelligence, hence learning about his ability to communicate with sign language. Seeing Caesar's potential, Maurice befriended him becoming Caesar's best and most trusted friend. During the Ape Rebellion, Maurice served as the second of Caesar's lieutenants, the first being Rocket. Over the next ten years, Maurice remains loyal to Caesar and serves as the colony's overseer and as a teacher to the new generation of apes.
In the beginning of his life, Maurice was part of a circus and from his cage he witnessed the dark side of humanity. He was also taught Sign Language from one of the circus workers. Before he turned fifteen, Maurice was sold from his circus and sent to the San Bruno Primate Shelter, where he bunkered with fellow apes Rocket, Heston, Andy, Lucky, Vanessa, Cornelia, Buck, and countless other chimpanzees.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
One day, Maurice picked up the scent of a newcomer named Caesar and kept quiet as the rest of the chimpanzees screeched and hooted in hostility and Dodge Landon berating them for amusement. Two days later in the play area, he sat close to the wall with the sunset wallpaper and observed the chimpanzees. Maurice saw Caesar entering the area, and found him strange as he wore human clothing. Maurice then saw Rocket rising and hooting, sensing the alpha's hostility against the newcomer. Keeping his eye on Caesar attempting to greet Rocket, Maurice realized Caesar was smarter than the apes until he was pulled from his thought by Rocket's assault on Caesar, which led to a chase on the center tree and Rocket biting Caesar's left hand, which made him fall from the tree. Maurice kept still even when the chimps followed until Dodge shot both Caesar and Rocket with tranqs, which made the chimp crowd disperse.
That night, Maurice watched Caesar sulking in his cell and decided to interact with the strange ape. Catching Caesar's attention, Maurice asked him in Sign if his hand hurt, which surprised Caesar. As Caesar asked him in Sign how he knew how to do so, Maurice revealed he learned from being a circus orangutan, which made Caesar happy until Maurice spotted Dodge entering the holding pens with his father John Landon, who was holding a tranq gun. Maurice warned Caesar to be careful because John and Dodge don't like smart apes. Not turning, Maurice heard John shooting Lucky with a tranq and Dodge dragging the unconscious chimp on a roller. As Caesar Signed what the humans were doing, Maurice Signed he doesn't know, both unaware that Lucky was taken to Gen-Sys for AL-113 testing.
The next day, Maurice noticed Caesar leaving his cell and returning moments later in a rage, followed by Caesar wiping off the circular diamond symbol he drew two nights ago on his wall. Maurice sensed Caesar felt betrayed until Dodge ran the alarm for the apes to head to the play area. Maurice sat on his usual spot, chewing on a twig as he spotted Caesar climbing up the center tree and keeping his head down to avoid Rocket. As Caesar sat alone at the top, Maurice noticed he was looking around as if he was planning something. When the buzzer went off to call it a day, Maurice and the apes returned to their cells. As night fell, Maurice noticed Dodge walking through the cell hallway with three of his friends. Maurice gazed at one of them, a female, and startled her, causing Maurice to turn his back to them. Maurice then jumped up as Dodge pressed his cattle prod on Rocket's cell, causing a static volt to run through the rest of the cells. Maurice then witnessed Caesar seizing one of Dodge's friend briefly before letting him go, which the orangutan realized that Caesar was planning something.
That night, Maurice saw Caesar unlocking his pen with a switchblade, which Caesar pocketed from Dodge's friend, tied to twigs, and opening the hatch. Maurice and Caesar traded looks before Caesar left to the play area to release the gorilla Buck, who became grateful to the intelligent ape. Maurice then witnessed Caesar waking Rocket and leading him to the play area, where he knocked him down and cornered the alpha with Buck. Realizing Caesar planned to usurp Rocket, Maurice and the chimps alongside his pen witnessed Rocket bowing down to Caesar and surrendering the alpha title to him.
Two days following the usurpation, Maurice saw John and Dodge opening Caesar's cell for a human named Will Rodman, whom Maurice surmised has a special connection to Caesar. After Caesar declined the human's offer to go home and closed the pen door, Maurice saw the human walk away in sorrow and sensed Caesar in turmoil. Maurice noticed Buck beginning to hoot, followed by the chimps, excluding Rocket, which Maurice realized the apes have accepted Caesar into their fold. That night, Maurice saw Caesar giving Rocket a cookie, and demonstrating him to give a cookie to each ape, starting with Heston. After Heston ate his cookie, Rocket placed one in Maurice's slot, which he ate it and exchanged a look with Caesar, realizing the new alpha is scheming as Rocket continued to give each ape a cookie and hoot in unison.
The next day, Maurice walked from his spot near the wall and sat next to Caesar on the center rock, asking him why he made Rocket give each cookie to the apes in Sign. Caesar grabbed one of Maurice's twig and, in Sign, snapped it as a gesture that apes are weak when alone, which shocked the orangutan. Maurice then saw Caesar grab a couple of twigs and attempted to break them, but failed as he told the orangutan, in Sign, that apes are truly strong through unity until both of their attentions caught a couple of chimps fighting until the alarm goes off, ceasing the fight as the apes proceeded back to their pens. Before leaving, Maurice told Caesar, in Sign, the apes are stupid. During the night, Maurice slept as Caesar snuck out of the shelter and returned with two ALZ-113 canisters, rupturing them to expose the apes to the virus.
In the morning, Maurice woke up to find his mind has expanded and granted him heightened intelligence, and he surmised the same thing happened to the other apes as well. Walking out of the tunnel and into the play area after Andy, Maurice glared at Caesar in gratitude before resuming his way to the area. After all the apes were out on the play area, Maurice and the apes began to learn Sign from Caesar until Maurice spotted John looking at them, howling to warn the apes, causing them to disperse. After John left, Maurice and the apes resume Caesar's teaching.
After the apes returned to their cells for the night, Maurice spotted Caesar still standing in the play area, realizing that Caesar's planning to liberate the apes in the shelter. Maurice then saw Dodge enter the play area and demanded that Caesar returns to his pen before the human attacked Caesar with the prod. As Caesar refused to budge, Maurice and the apes began to rile up as Caesar gained the upper hand, and Maurice, along with each ape, was shocked by Caesar performing a feat no ape has ever done: he spoke in defiance. After Caesar knocked out Dodge and dragged him in an empty pen, Maurice watched as the alpha freed every ape, including Rocket. Maurice stood silent as the apes reveled in their freedom until Rodney came in and was pulled down by two chimps. He even witnessed Caesar stopping the apes from killing Rodney and locked him in a cell until Dodge got out and reached for the hose. After Rocket pulled the hose and Caesar grabbed it to spray Dodge as he triggered the prod, Maurice saw Dodge's body fall and Caesar left horrified, which Maurice surmised he never killed before.
Maurice then followed Caesar along with the apes to escape form the shelter, climbing on the center tree and bursting out of the atrium-style roof. By dawn as the apes reached the outskirt of the city, Caesar divided his forces into two groups: Buck takes half of the tropp to the San Francisco Zoo while Maurice, Caesar and Rocket lead the other half to Gen-Sys Laboratories. By daylight, Maurice remained near the back of the troop as Caesar, Rocket and a few chimps smashed through the front entrance of Gen-Sys, terrifying the employees as the apes made their way to the testing lab. Terrorizing the humans inside, Caesar, Rocket, and Maurice smashed through the glass doors, snarling as Rocket and the chimps free the apes the humans were testing on, one of which was Cornelia who was taken the day before. Maurice then followed Caesar as he gave the order to leave.
Once Rocket and the chimpanzees smashed their way out of Gen-Sys, they rendezvous with Buck's troop, which now included all the chimpanzees, gorillas and orangutans from the zoo, with a couple of metal rods from the zoo apes' exhibit. Later as they made their way through the city and most of the chimpanzees crashed through the buildings, Maurice and Buck spotted two police cars approaching them. After grunting at Buck to help stop the cars, Maurice grabbed the manhole lid from the ground as Buck pulled a parking meter out of the ground. Maurice tossed the lid with all his might at the first car, rupturing the windshield and causing it to crash, while Buck threw the meter into the second car's engine, stopping it. Maurice and Buck made their way to a cable car alongside Caesar and Rocket, which Caesar has accepted the three of them as his lieutenants as the car headed to their designation: the Muir Woods beyond the Golden Gate Bridge.
Battle on the bridge
Once at the Golden Gate Bridge, the apes made their way through the bridge while antagonizing the humans in their cars. Almost to the bridge's center, Maurice and the apes stopped at Caesar's command, who sensed the law-enforcement humans are planning an attack. Maurice saw Caesar directing a large number of chimps, including a bonobo named Koba, to climb up on the suspensions, before the alpha directed the orangutans and apes with young to move forward under the bridge. Seeing his plan, Maurice hooted for the orangutans and moved underneath the bridge by swinging on the bars. On the way through Maurice saw Wolfie, one of the chimps from the shelter, fall to his death in the water. Enraged, Maurice began to move faster and held his position once the orangutans were right underneath the armed humans.
Hearing Caesar's signal, Maurice and the orangutans climbed up and began to assist the attack with the chimpanzees from above, followed by the remaining chimps and the gorillas. As they overpowered and disarmed the humans, Maurice watched as the humans ran in fear and the apes reveled in their victory until a helicopter appeared and one of the humans began to fire on the apes. Maurice and many apes took cover while a few were shot dead, which made Caesar grab a pair of chains and threw it at the shooter, followed by Buck lunging at the helicopter and bringing it down at the cost of his life. No time for mourning the loss, Maurice and the apes resumed their journey after the bonobo tossed the copter over, killing the remaining humans on-board.
Freedom at last
Reaching the Muir Woods, Maurice and the apes began to move freely until they spotted Caesar stopping Koba from harming Caesar's human father, whom followed them from the bridge. Maurice and Rocket moved closer as they saw Caesar bid farewell to Will and headed to the apes. As Caesar walked toward his kind, Maurice held his hand out to Caesar, which the alpha briefly touched before heading to the same tree he first climbed five years ago. To express their gratitude for their liberation, Maurice and the apes stood upright on their legs like Caesar before he climbed the tree. Maurice then climbed up a tree close to Caesar and watched the scenery of the sun and the damage on the bridge at the dawn of their new lives.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes: Firestorm
Maurice serves as one of Caesar's commanders as the apes struggle for survival after the Battle on the Golden Gate Bridge. Caesar assigns him a group of apes to lead away from the humans while Rocket leads the second group while Caesar leads a third. When Cornelia begins talking about how different forest food is to jungle food, Maurice takes her side much to Caesar's annoyance.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Decade of Peace
Ten years later, Maurice has helped the other apes build a large thriving village in the Muir Woods Park where he has become an overseer and teacher to the young apes of the growing ape colony. Because of his role as a teacher, many of the apes evolved or otherwise have learned how to use the ability of sign language as a way of communication from him or Caesar.
Maurice also appears to have take on a lawgiver role teaching the other apes the "Ape not kill ape" law which is shown to be a serious warning to those that would dare break the colony's rules. He has earned himself a place in Ape Council and he has remained close friends with Caesar to the point where they view each other as brothers and to the point where Caesar's oldest son Blue Eyes sees Maurice as an uncle.
Discovering Human survivors
Maurice is first seen teaching the younger generation in the village as Caesar's hunting party returns. After the birth of Caesar's second son, Maurice sits with him and congratulates him. They then talk about the humans and how few they have seen in the past ten years. Maurice states that unlike Caesar, he never got to know the good side of humans, only their bad side. The next day, Maurice awakens to the sound of a gunshot and accompanies the other apes to its origins where they discover that a group of humans have shot Ash (Rocket's son). The apes then scare off the humans by yelling at them (in English) as the humans flee, Maurice takes an immediate interest in Alexander's satchel (which was left behind following Carver's accidental attack on Ash) while Caesar orders koba and others to follow the humans. Maurice is later seen fiddling with his new discovery while the other apes are shown arguing over what to do with the humans. He takes an active part in the meeting by disagreeing with Koba's wish to immediately attack the remaining humans, stating they do not know how many of them remain. Their argument would be interrupted by Caesar who says he has a more peaceful way to settle things with the humans. The next morning, Maurice would march into the city with his people as Caesar issues his warning of war to the humans if they dare enter ape territory again before returning the satchel
Interest in Humans
Later on, Maurice and his fellow apes are in the woods watching over the humans as they all wake up. He looks through Alexander's comics as the human questions him if he can read to which the ape doesn't answer. Maurice later sits with Alexander and becomes fascinated by his comics and drawings, and begins to become sympathetic to the humans just as Caesar was to them as well. Maurice would then join his people when the humans go to work at the San Francisco Dam to restore power to the city and is questioned by Caesar as to where Koba had went.
Later when the humans are in trouble at the dam Maurice and his friends help them escape from the area before they drown from the rising water flooding the building. Maurice would then witness Koba angrily walk in the building and attack the humans while demanding Caesar to come out. When Koba was about to attack Alexander and Malcolm, Maurice got in the way and protected his new human friends from the angry ape and would as Caesar nearly beats Koba to death for his insolence but stops himself by remembering the "Ape Not Kill Ape" law (as it is the first Law of Caesar).
When the city of San Francisco has it's power restored, the apes and the humans would celebrate not just for the humans benefits but for the royal ape family when Cornelia suddenly walks out alive and well. The apes would continue to celebrate until the sound of gunshot is heard and Caesar's body falls from a tree branch much to the horror of his people. Along with that the Ape Village suddenly bursts into flames causing the apes to flee from their home as Blue Eyes emerges with a gun and the ape hating human Carver's baseball cap. Blue Eyes shows his new discovery with the other apes while Maurice watching speaks by telling Malcolm and his family to run for their lives.
As they flee, Koba comes out of nowhere taking up the mantle of Ape king by telling the apes that humans attacked and killed Caesar and burnt their homes. He then orders them to retaliate by killing humans while they are vulnerable. It is unknown where Maurice went while the rest of the rowdy and angry apes took up arms and went on to attack the city killing many humans.
Following the supposed death of Caesar, Koba and his army have seized control of the city of San Francisco and has imprisoned any human survivor in cells, due to wanting them to see the oppression of apes.
Koba also imprisoned any ape who refuses to kill human and remain a loyal follower to Caesar on a bus right next to the humans cells, these apes imprisoned include Maurice, Rocket, Luca and others. Maurice would later be visited by Blue Eyes who he warns to stay away for his own safety
Restoring Caesar to power
Later on, Maurice and other captives would sit and are forced to watch the madness Koba has begun before noticing Caesar's emblem appear on the window of the bus and would see blue eyes at the corner telling them to be quiet and wait for his return. At night, the captive apes start a ruckus causing their guards to try and quell the situation but they are overpowered by the prisoners who shake the bus on the other side, this act distracts the guard ape long enough for the human prisoners to escape. Blue Eyes then returns and liberates his uncles before they all flee the area. The assemble group joins blue eyes and return to the Rodman House where they find their leader and friend Caesar still alive telling them Koba's madness will end. Maurice would be a close witness to Caesar and Koba's fight as they battle for the title of the Ape king. When Koba gets hold of a gun and open fire on the other apes Maurice is injured by one of Koba's stray bullets gaining a scar in the process. For the rest of the battle he was shown being carried to safety by Blue Eyes and Rocket before watching as Caesar tackles Koba and leaves the bonobo hanging from the ledge of the Human Colony's building. The wounded Maurice watches as Caesar drops Koba to his death and would celebrate Caesar's restoration to power and join him in regrouping with the other apes.
Preparing for War
Maurice is then seen bowing down to Caesar, along with the other apes awaiting his guidance for the fighting with the humans to come.
War for the Planet of the Apes
Maurice still acts as one of Caesar's chief and most trusted advisers. He along with Rocket and Luca companies Caesar of his quest to get revenge.
When the company discover Nova, Maurice is the one that convinces Caesar to keep Nova, an act that would unintentionally save Caesar's life later.
After Luca is killed, Maurice mourned his friend before he got in a brief argument with Caesar where he compared Caesar to Koba due to his lust for revenge against the humans for killing his family and Luca, however, Caesar later admits this comparison to be true.
After Caesar is captured by the humans and forced into slave labor; Maurice, Bad Ape, Rocket and Nova plan to rescue him and the other apes.
Maurice watched as Rocket intentionally got captured to protect the wandering Nova. Along with Bad Ape and Nova, they begin preparations for the escape. He also gives Nova her name for her to be accepted in the colony.
Maurice takes part in the final battle and escapes along with the other apes, surviving the conflict which follows and the avalanche. He then makes his way with Caesar and the other apes to the Oasis. Maurice is with Caesar when he reveals his wounds from the battle and tells him of life ending.
Although Maurice is extremely upset by Caesar's death, he also accepts it. In this moment Maurice also speaks for the second time in the movie by promising Caesars that his son Cornelius will know who his father was, what he stood for and what he did to protect the apes. Caesar took his long time friend's words with a smile before succumbing to his injuries, to Maurice's sadness.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Maurice is an orangutan that speaks very little, he is kind hearted and is the first to befriend Caesar after discovering that the chimpanzee could also speak using sign language. He is also intelligent, wise and extremely loyal when it comes to his friends.
When Maurice is first introduced in the first film, he is shown to be cynical, gloomy, skeptical and extremely pessimistic, he is respectful to Caesar and admires his intelligence and ambition, and is keen to listen to Caesar's ideas. He is also the first that Caesar bonds with in captivity, since they both knew sign language and have similar methods of thought.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
At the beginning of the second film, Maurice admits his skepticism of there being any good in humans, due to having only seen their bad sides, however, his curiosity towards Malcolm and his family prompts him to befriend Alexander, Malcolm's son who teaches him more about the human world by showing him a photo of his late mother and his book of drawings, the orangutan saw through his own eyes what some of the other humans are like and that they can be trusted which sees his opinion matched with Caesar's that there are good humans. His new view of humans led to him defending Malcolm and Alexander from the human-hating ape Koba as well as warning Malcolm and his family to run for their lives during Koba's usurpation against Caesar as the alpha male of the apes.
Moreover when Koba took power, Maurice was one of the few apes to stand against him and remain a loyal supporter to Caesar despite being imprisoned on a bus for his insolence. This shows that he is faithful only to his true king and best friend as his loyalty was not tainted by thoughts of vengeance on the innocent humans during Koba's reign.
War for the Planet of the Apes
Maurice is still loyal to Caesar and still shows his sympathetic side to humans like Nova knowing that she would die if left alone which puts his relationship with the ape king on a slight strain but still trustworthy.
Right up to the point where he started to admit to his friend that he was starting to act like Koba but he became mournful of Caesar's death. He assures his oldest friend that Cornelius will know what his father did for them.
- Animal Strength: Like all orangutans, Maurice is extremely powerful and strong, during the Ape Rebellion, he is proven to be strong enough to lift a manhole lid and throw it at one of the police cars, which caused it to crash into a police car. In War Maurice was able to beat Boyle to death with ease.
- Genius-Level Intellect: Maurice's intellect is the highest among all apes and even humans; surpassed only by Caesar, Blue Eyes and Cornelius, even before Maurice was exposed to the ALZ-113, he had some level of intelligence, after Caesar arrived at the ape shelter, he was observing him and realize that the latter is much more intelligent than a normal ape, after he was exposed to the ALZ-113, Maurice became much more intelligent than before. By the time of the events of Dawn; Maurice's intelligence and IQ has increased to the point when he has been appointed by Caesar as one of the teachers of the new generation of apes, as well as being the overseer of the San Francisco Ape Colony.
- Sign Language: Like Caesar, Maurice knows sign language, as he uses it as a way of communication, little is known about how or by who he learned it from, other then that he came from the circus. In Dawn, Maurice is seen teaching the young apes the basics of sign language in order for them to communicate proving that he is very skilled in teaching it to other apes as many apes either evolved or otherwise have learned the art from him and Caesar.
- Expert Hand-To-Hand Combatant: Due to Maurice being the third-in-command of the Ape Army, he is a capable combatant. As seen when the apes were battling the humans during the Battle on the Golden Gate Bridge, Maurice was able to defeat many police officers before they were forced to retreat.
- Expert Horse Rider: Like many of the other apes, Maurice is able to ride a horse with ease.
- Expert Leader: During the Battle on the Golden Gate Bridge, Maurice was seen as a capable leader as seen when he led the orangutans and some of the chimpanzees under the bridge in order to attack the police officers when their attention was focused on the other apes, this tactic was successful in obtaining victory.
- Speech: Having inhaled the ALZ-113, like the other evolved apes, Maurice has gained the ability of speech. During Dawn, his only dialogue outside of sign language is one word, "Run" which was warning for Malcolm and his family to flee when Koba took power. In War, he spoke to give Nova her name, at the end, it is revealed Maurice's english is broken as he spoke to Caesar before his death, promising him that Cornelius will know who his father was and what he did for him and the ape colony.
- Maurice was the deuteragonist in War for the Planet of the Apes.
- Maurice was named in tribute to Maurice Evans, who played chief orangutan Dr. Zaius in Planet of the Apes and Beneath the Planet of the Apes, although the movie used the American pronunciation of his name ("Maw-reece") rather than Evans' own British pronunciation ("Morris").
- In Battle for the Planet of the Apes, both the Lawgiver - the wise historian - and Virgil - the advisor - were portrayed as orangutans. The portrayal of Maurice reflects the lineage of just, wise orangutans from the original movies like the Lawgiver and Dr. Zaius.
- Maurice is the only known Orangutan in the Ape Colony to have been given the ALZ-113 drug.
- It is likely the orangutans have been exposed to the virus after living with the other apes for so long.
- At age 25 during Dawn, Maurice was one of the six oldest apes to appear.
- The other apes were Koba, Buck, Luca, Rocket, and Caesar.
- Out of those six, Maurice and Rocket are the only ones that are still alive.
- After Caesar's death, it can be assumed that Maurice played some role in raising Cornelius alongside Lake and Rocket.
- In War, Maurice is showing small signs of adaptation, as he appears to be able to knuckle-walk and arch his back like chimpanzees and gorillas, as opposed to an orangutan's traditional fist-walking and their back appears hunched.
- There are many postings on Karin Konoval's official public Facebook page that tell about her experiences getting to know real life orangutans. Konoval later confirmed that Maurice was based on "feisty" Bruno from the Los Angeles Zoo, on the "heart and soul" of Towan from Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, and on Clyde the walking orangutan.
- Karin Konoval had to wear weights as part of her motion capture suit.
- To celebrate one million likes on the official Apes Facebook page, Matt Reeves made a congratulatory video for the page. In the background on the editing monitors behind Reeves were a series of completed stills of Caesar and Maurice in the editing program.
- At CinemaCon, Maurice was seen in the footage that was shown.
- In an interview at CinemaCon, Andy Serkis mentioned that Maurice would act as a school teacher to the younger apes and that Maurice might be able to speak English. From what Serkis mentioned, Maurice helped Caesar teach many of the apes how to use sign language as a way of communication.
- Maurice had brief appearances in the footage at CinemaCon. He appeared to be sad in some of the shots.
- Maurice made a brief appearance at the beginning of Dawn's first TV spot. He was on Caesar's left when the apes were preparing for war at the beginning of the spot. He was not wearing warpaint.
- Maurice, Rocket, Luca, and other apes who are loyal to Caesar and refuse to kill unarmed humans were caged and held prisoner by Koba.
- Maurice was the third known ape to speak in the Chernin Entertainment PotA franchise. In Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, he told the humans in the Ape Village to leave when Koba took over with only one word, "Run".
- Maurice received a scar on the top of his right cheek after Koba fired at him, Blue-Eyes, Rocket and Luca.
- Maurice is the first ape that Caesar ever communicated with in sign.
- He was also the last ape he communicated with in English at the time of his death.
- See Maurice/Gallery.
- Rise of the Planet of the Apes
- Dawn of the Planet of the Apes: Firestorm
- Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (novelization)
- Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (BOOM! Studios)
- War for the Planet of the Apes: Revelations
- War for the Planet of the Apes (novelization)
- War for the Planet of the Apes (BOOM! Studios)