I run a business, not a petting zoo!
~ Steven Jacobs's most famous quote.
~ Steven Jacob's last words to Koba before the latter kills him in vengeance for the former's mistreatment towards him.

Steven Jacobs is the main antagonist of the 2011 live action film, Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

He was the charismatic and egomaniacal CEO of Gen-Sys laboratories as well as a narcissistic individual who not only aided in mankind's downfall, but also the reason why Koba had genocidal hatred for mankind in the first place, as Jacobs' actions have indirectly caused the events of Koba's uprising against Caesar.

He was portrayed by David Oyelowo, who also voiced Agent Kallus in Star Wars: Rebels and Scar in The Lion Guard.


He was the greedy CEO that ran the Gen-Sys laboratories, where Dr. Will Rodman was researching a cure to Alzheimer's Disease. Before being a CEO, Jacobs had a long history of running projects aimed at studying cognitive ability. He teamed up with neuroscientist Amol, who sought to create a machine capable of producing images directly from the brain. Jacobs was skeptical of the project's practicality, and took an instant dislike of Koba, the ape selected for the trial. Amol's experiments proved to be a financial disaster for Jacobs, who proceeded to fire the neuroscientist just as the neuroscientist and Koba had a good relationship, and then confronted Koba himself, telling him that were the choice his, he would put him down himself. Jacob also furiously derided Koba as nothing more than an animal, as well as gained a penchant for torturing apes used for experiment (as he callously experimented on apes in order to bypass human trials), once again, including Koba. Some time later, Jacobs' fortunes changed, and he became head of the Gen-Sys Laboratories. Despite this, he already caused one step to both himself and mankind's downfall.

After two years in charge of the lab, one of Rodman's chimps went berserk and Jacobs shut down research on the 'ALZ-112' drug for a further eight years. It was only when Rodman revealed he had used the drug on his own father, with limited results, that Jacobs approved development of a refined version.

Ironically, the ape to be chosen for testing was Koba, and once Jacobs saw Koba writing his name down, he became convinced that the drug would also work on humans. As a result, Jacobs ordered further testing of the refined virus despite Rodman urging to study the virus more before continuing further tests, caring only for the profits to be made at its success. Soon after all the tests of the new drug, a hyper-intelligent ape Caesar, stages a rebellion against his captors and later rescues his fellow intelligent apes from the Gen-Sys labs that were being experimented on by the cruel and greedy Jacobs. After Caesar frees all the apes from the laboratories, Jacobs flags down a police helicopter where he commandeers it and the crew, directing them to crush the ape rebellion in an effort to avoid bad publicity for the company he works for as well as himself.

Caesar and his apes then go on to battle a large force of police stationed on the Golden Gate Bridge. During the battle on the bridge, Jacobs arrives on the police chopper which then begins gunning down apes, much to the delight of Jacobs.

After killing several apes, Jacobs spots Caesar on the bridge and identifies him as the leader. He attempts to have the chopper gunner kill him with a hail of gunfire, until a silverback gorilla named Buck throws Caesar out of the way of the incoming gunfire and sacrifices his life by jumping on the police chopper and attacking its occupants, which causes it to crash on the very edge of the bridge, killing the entire crew and severely wounding Jacobs. After watching his friend Buck succumb to his wounds sustained from gunshots and the crash, Caesar hears Jacobs pleading for help as the helicopter is about to tip over the edge. However, in retribution for the death of his friend Buck and the cruelty Jacobs has shown the apes, Caesar turns his back on him and instead allows Koba to decide Jacob's fate. When Jacobs sees that it's Koba, he's mortified, and watches in terror as Koba walk up to the remains of the helicopter and ruthlessly kick it over the edge, sending a terrified and screaming Jacobs plummeting to his death in the bay below.

Despite his death Jacob's actions shaped many events in the years to come as his experiments on Koba caused his hatred for mankind which drove him to overthrow Caesar 8 years later, the aftermath of which also drew the attention of Alpha-Omega another 2 years later which ironically resulted in Caesar's death.


Jacobs was a ruthless, cruel, narcissistic, ambitious, arrogant, greedy and selfish man, callously experimenting on apes in order to bypass human trials. He did nothing for anybody but himself, and senselessly experimented on Koba in order to realize his plans for turning a profit. He has no problems with others breaking the law, yet is willing to blackmail them with this information them, as seen when he threatened to fire Will if he did not do as he asked. Will, utterly frustrated with the way Steven was treating him and his utterly greedy nature, quit his job, while Steven told him even if he did leave, they would still continue with ALZ-113 trials, further showing that all he cared about was money.

He was a nefariously corrupt, bigoted and Machiavellian individual who did not care about who he offended in his quest for money. He's revealed to be a pathetic, utter coward, as seen during the Battle on the Golden Gate Bridge when his helicopter is brought down by the then deceased Buck and he, the only survivor, pathetically begs for Caesar to help him. Caesar coldly withdraws and signals Koba to decide Jacob's fate. His cowardice flares up in his final moments prior to getting his well-deserved comeuppance.



  • Steven Jacobs is The Heavy of the reboot trilogy as his twisted experiments caused the near-extinction of humanity and the rise of the apes, otherwise Koba would not have turned evil and waged war against mankind, and in turn, Colonel McCullough wouldn't have waged war on the apes.
  • Ironically, in the sequel, Koba dies in the same fashion that Jacobs died.


           PlanetOfTheApesTitle Villains

Main Antagonists

Steven Jacobs

Supporting Antagonists

Minor Antagonists

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