Keri RussellWith a release date already set for May 2014, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes has been filling its leading cast very nicely in recent weeks.

Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty) was the first to come on board last month, and he was soon followed by Kodi Smit-McPhee (Let Me In) and Gary Oldman (The Dark Knight Rises). And returning to the cast will by Andy Serkis, reprising his role as the ape, Caesar.

Now Variety are reporting that the film has found its female lead in Keri Russell (Felicity), the Golden Globe-winning actress who returns to work alongside director Matt Reeves, having led the TV series, Felicity, that Reeves co-created with J.J. Abrams.

Plot details are being kept under wraps, but we do know that Dawn of the Planet of the Apes will take place fifteen years after the events of the original 2011 blockbuster.

One focus is on the group of human scientists who are struggling to survive alone in San Francisco. Another aspect of the story is the struggle of intelligent ape Caesar, played by a returning Andy Serkis, to maintain dominance over his kingdom.

Whilst we know that Russell has taken the female lead in the female, we don’t know anything more about her role for certain. But given the focus of the story, it seems plausible that she’ll be playing one of the human scientists in San Francisco.

Matt Reeves (Cloverfield) is taking the helm in place of Rupert Wyatt. He’ll be directing from a script written by Mark Bomback (The Wolverine). And Peter Chernin, Dylan Clarke, Amanda Silver, and Rick Jaffa will be producing.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is set to be released on 23rd May, 2014, and is currently without any competition on that release date. It does, however, open a week after Legendary’s Godzilla, which could definitely give it a run for its money if Godzilla opens to big numbers and has a strong word of mouth after its first weekend.