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Terry Notary (born August 14, 1968) is an American actor, stunt co-ordinator/double and movement coach.[1] Notary mainly portrays creatures and animals for the film and television industry, and is known for his motion capture performances in films like Avatar, The Adventures of Tintin: Secrets of the Unicorn, the Planet of the Apes reboot series, and The Hobbit film trilogy.

Terry Notary
Born (1968-08-14) August 14, 1968 (age 49)
San Rafael, California, United States
Nationality American
Occupation Actor, stunt co-ordinator/double, movement coach


Early lifeEdit

Born in San Rafael, California, Notary was diagnosed as being severely hyperactive at age 7. His parents enrolled him in gymnastics class to burn off excess energy.[2] He won a gymnastics scholarship at UCLA, where he graduated with a major in theatre.


Notary's first career was as a performer with Cirque du Soleil. His first job as a stunt movement coach was on Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Director Ron Howard was hiring Cirque gymnasts for the film, and after sufficiently impressing Howard, Notary was offered the job of teaching all the Who actors how to move.[3] Notary followed this new career path to Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes, for which he prepared by studying ape movements at the LA County Zoo. Notary's first motion capture film was Avatar, where he was the movement coach for the Na'vi.[4]

Swedish director Ruben Östlund hired Notary when casting his Palme d'Or-winning 2017 film The Square. For Oleg, a character who acts like an ape, Östlund discovered Notary after running a Google search for "actor imitating monkey" and viewing one of Notary's performances (which was for an audition for Planet of the Apes.[5]



  1. ^ Caranicas, Peter (Aug 9, 2011). "Terry Notary on 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes'". Variety. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  2. ^ Dundjerski, Marina. "Monkey Business". UCLA Magazine (Fall 2001). Retrieved 17 November 2016. 
  3. ^ Bhattacharya, Sanjiv (11 July 2014). "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes: how to act like an ape". The Telegraph. Retrieved 17 November 2016. 
  4. ^ "MEET THE TALENT – TERRY NOTARY". Retrieved 17 November 2016. 
  5. ^ Utichi, Joe (29 May 2017). "Meet Ruben Östlund, Director Of The Newly-Crowned Palme D'Or Winner, 'The Square' – Cannes". Retrieved 29 May 2017. 
  6. ^ Alter, Ethan (October 25, 2017). "Terry Notary on going ape in 'The Square' and playing teen Groot in 'Avengers'; plus, an exclusive clip". Yahoo! Movies. Archived from the original on October 26, 2017. Retrieved October 26, 2017. 

External linksEdit