We've been through hell together! We spent four years, FOUR YEARS fighting that virus, and another four fighting each other! It was chaos! But do you all know what we're up against?! And I want you to know, it's not just about power! It's about giving us the hope to rebuild, to reclaim the world we lost!
~ Dreyfus
I'm saving the human race!
~ Dreyfus's final words.

Dreyfus was the secondary antagonist of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. He was the leader of the Human Resistance, and although not necessarily evil by any means, Dreyfus is willing to take extremist means to save and protect humanity. 

He was portrayed by Gary Oldman, who also played Egor Korshunov, General GrawlMason VergerCarnegie, Lord Shen, Baron Ruber, Norman Stansfield, Drexl Spivey, Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg, Lord Vortech, Count Dracula, and Floyd Banner.


Dreyfus is a former police chief who is appointed as the leader of the human resistance. Having experienced personal loss (his wife and two sons having succumbed to the Simian Flu), Dreyfus sees Caesar and his colony as a threat after discovering an ape encampment at a local power station. Seeing no other solution, Dreyfus has one goal: wipe them out. He is Malcolm's boss, who he works closely with, they have very different views on how the apes should be handled. During the middle of the movie, Dreyfus and his surviving crew prep for battle as the apes attack. The apes ultimately break through the human's defense and Dreyfus escapes, leaving the humans to suffer.

Near the climax of the film, Dreyfus, encountering Malcolm in an abandoned underground bunker reveals to him that he and his men have made contact with a military base up north and they are already on their way to help them fight the apes. When Malcolm discovers that Dreyfus has set up a bomb ready to be detonated, he then threatens Dreyfus and his two men with a rifle and orders him to deactivate the bomb. Dreyfus refuses and has no choice but to willfully sacrifice himself and his two men with the bomb detonator for the survival of the human existence and for the extinction of the ape colony. Despite Dreyfus's efforts, Malcolm manages to escape and survive the explosion and the apes survive the bomb and the fall of the tower, with the exception of Koba (who falls to his death shortly after).


Dawn of the Planet of the Apes: Firestorm

Dreyfus was seen as a man who has been through a great personal tragedy. Before the deaths of his family, he was seen as a loving husband to his wife of twenty years, Maddy and a loving father to their two teenage sons, John and Edward. To the people of San Francisco, Dreyfus was regarded as a hero for all his years on the Police Force and was seen to be always concerned over the wellbeing of others even if it does drive his wife crazy with worry.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

After the deaths of his wife and sons, Dreyfus still holds many of the beliefs he held before only he was more passionate to the point of corruption; as he views the apes as a great threat to the survival of the human race and sees their extermination as a sure fire way to avenge his family as soon as he learns of their existence.

Dreyfus was arrogant and overconfident, as he stated that if Malcolm isn't back by the deadline in three days, he and his men will go up to Ape Territory and wipe out all the apes. However, when the human colony came under attack by the apes, Dreyfus' army was no match for the Ape Army.

Even after Caesar addressed the humans in english and after the apes defeated his army, Dreyfus refused to acknowledge him and the rest of his species as nothing more than violent, mindless animals and continuously berated the apes, unwilling to accept the facts lying in front of him.

Like his ape counterpart Koba, Dreyfus was ultimately delusional and unstable due to the inner rage and turmoil he felt about the deaths of his family. Even when Malcolm attempted to explain the situation that the apes only attacked them because they thought the humans (apparently) killed Cesar and attacked their territory, Dreyfus refused to listen, and moments before he committed suicide, he claimed he was saving the human race; which was quite the opposite as this was simply revenge on the apes for (supposedly) causing the deaths of his family.

Dreyfus attempt failed as the explosion only injured several apes on the tower and only killed a few, when he detonated the C-4 explosives above him; he completely disregarded the fact that the explosion would not only kill him, but his men and Malcolm as well, and only wanted to kill the apes.



  • Gary Oldman mentioned in an interview that Dreyfus was the designated leader of a community of humans who were lucky enough to survive the flu, the disease and ensuing social uprising following the global pandemic at the end of Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Oldman's character was a police officer before the fall of civilization, and has subsequently been elected to lead over his group of survivors. The human community, desperate to find power, ventures off to a nearby power station, to see if it's still operational. There, the humans "discover that there's a whole community of apes living there. We believed that they were all completely fire-bottomed and wiped out". They're not wiped out yet, but that might change when Oldman finds out about the apes. "There's only one answer for him; Wipe them out", he teased.
  • Dreyfus lost both his wife and two sons to the Simian Flu which further fueled his belief that Caesar and his colony need to be wiped out in order to ensure humanity's survival.
  • It is speculated that he may be a counterpart to Governor Kolp, an antagonist in Battle for the Planet of the Apes since both are leaders of the survivors and bent on the destruction of the apes.
  • Ironically, though being advertised as the main villain in order to hide Koba's true role as main antagonist, Dreyfus himself is the perfect human counterpart of the said true main antagonist for the following reasons;
    • Dreyfus and Koba are hellbent in the destruction of each other's race (Dreyfus want to exterminate all apes while Koba wants to eradicate all humans until none of them are left).
    • Both are indifferent with their ally's intention to create the peace between their race, whom coincidentally, happened to being counterparts on each other (Dreyfus ignores Malcolm's intention to give the ape's a chance to co-exist peacefully with mankind while Koba was furious when he found out that Caesar intended to ensure that apes and mankind are able to live peacefully through his actions).
           Planet of the Apes Villains

Main Antagonists
Dr. Zaius | General Ursus | Albina | General Thade | Steven Jacobs | Koba | Colonel McCullough

Major Antagonists
General Aldo | Dr. Otto Hasslein | Governor Breck | Attar | Mendez I | Urko | Dodge Landon | Dreyfus | Red | Preacher

Minor Antagonists
Mendez XXVI | Ongaro | Adiposo | Limbo | Governor Kolp | Douglas Hunsiker | Carver | Winter