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

Steven Jacobs is the overarching antagonist of the Planet of the Apes reboot trilogy, serving as the main antagonist in it's first installment Rise of the Planet of the Apes and a posthumous antagonist in the rest of the trilogy.

He was the charismatic and egomaniacal CEO of Gen-Sys laboratories whose plan to put "ALZ-113" drugs on the market ended up causing a global pandemic that all but doomed most of humanity as a result. This consequently extended to the point where Jacobs is not only responsible for mankind's downfall, but also Koba's genocidal hatred for humans - thus indirectly triggering the events of Koba's eventual uprising against Caesar in the process.

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

Biography

He was the despicable 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 disapproval 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 his downfall and mankind's extinction.

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; 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. This ended up proving that Jacobs merely cares for the profits to be made at its success. Soon after all the tests of the new drug, a hyper-intelligent ape named Caesar stages a rebellion against his captors and later rescues his fellow intelligent apes from the Gen-Sys labs that were being experimented on under Jacobs' callousness. 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 eliminate 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 and shows delight when the authorities begin gunning down apes.

Eventually, 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. Caesar furiously walks over towards Jacob, who pleads with the ape to take his hand and lift him up to safety. 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 promptly grows 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.

Jacobs falls to his death.

Despite his death Jacobs' 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. Koba's uprising ended with Caesar defeating and killing him in their final battle. Two years afterwards, the aftermath of Koba's coup and demise had sparked the attention of a rogue military unit called Alpha-Omega - as their leader Colonel McCullough resolves to wipe out the ape colony. The result of McCullough's war on the apes results in not only his death, but ultimately concludes with Caesar's death as well.

Personality

Jacobs was a relentless, callous, narcissistic, ambitious, conceited, stingy and ungenerous man. This is proven to the fact that he callous love experimented on apes in order to bypass human trials for his own profitable desires. All in all, he did nothing for anybody but himself. In extension to this point, Jacobs would have senselessly experimented on Koba upon realizing the extent of his plots for turning a profit.

He also had no issues 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. In response to this, Will resigned from his job in frustration with the way Jacobs was treating him and his utterly stingy nature. But this did not faze Jacobs entirely as he told Will that if he departed, they would continue with ALZ-113 trials still - further showing that all Jacobs cared for was money.

Besides the fact that Jacobs was a corrupt and racist individual who disregard anyone he would offend in his quest for profit, he is revealed to be a pathetic and utter weakling soon after - as shown at the climax of the Battle on the Golden Gate Bridge when his helicopter is brought down by the then-deceased ape named Buck. Thereupon Jacob was the only survivor of the crash, but he faint-heartedly and pathetically begged for Caesar to help him even though he abused all the apes; Caesar coldly withdraws and signals Koba to decide Jacob's fate. Consequently, Jacobs' faint-heartedness flared up in his last moments just before he received his well-deserved comeuppance when Koba crucified him by sending the helicopter with Jacobs inside it plummeting to the water - with Jacobs falling to his demise in the process.

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See Also
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La Planète des Singes
Mi Zaïus | President of the Assembly

Planet of the Apes (1968)
Dr. Zaius | Dr. Maximus | President Gaius

Beneath the Planet of the Apes
General Ursus | Dr. Zaius | Albina | Ongaro | Adiposo | Caspay | Mendez XXVI

Escape from the Planet of the Apes
Dr. Otto Hasslein | E-1 | E-2

Conquest of the Planet of the Apes
Governor Breck | Chief Inspector Kolp

Battle for the Planet of the Apes
General Aldo | Governor Kolp | Mendez I

Planet of the Apes (2001)
General Thade | Attar | Limbo

Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Steven Jacobs | Dodge Landon | Douglas Hunsiker

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Koba | Dreyfus | Carver

War for the Planet of the Apes
Colonel McCullough | Alpha-Omega | Red | Winter | Preacher

Trivia

  • 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.