I've always felt that the success of Rise of the Planet of the Apes comes from its long, long development process. By the time the movie actually got made a lot of kinks had been worked out - and even then, the film was full of kinks. It just overcame them. Since the movie did well and Fox announced a sequel I've been nervous - would the studio do the right thing and try to make a GOOD movie or would they go the route of the original series and cheap out?
If the hiring of Scott Z Burns to write the film is any indication, they're going for a good movie. Possibly a really good movie. Burns wrote Contagion and The Informant! for Steven Soderbergh, and he has a reputation as a serious writer who does lots of research for his scripts. I like Burns' work because so far he has shown interesting range while also being dedicated to writing actually good things.
Where does the sequel go? The Hollywood Reporter has some basic, rudimentary info:
The new project is taking the story to the next level, with the apes on the path to emerge as society’s new rulers.
But that's pretty much what we expected from the end of the first film. Whatever the case, this news has me really excited; along with the return of director Rupert Wyatt and Andy Serkis, the hiring of Scott Z Burns makes this Apes fanatic feel very secure indeed.