Nicolas Cage Is in on the Joke

The Guardian has a somewhat lengthy piece on Nicolas Cage where he clears up a few misconceptions about himself. A few of which include:

  • There is a misperception, if you will, in critical response or even in Hollywood, that I can only do exaggerated characters. Or what they would call over-the-top performances.” He pauses, as if issuing an historic statement from the podium: “Well, this is completely false.”
  • “Another misconception about me is that I just do movies for pay cheques.”
  • “That I’m obsessed with comics.”
  • “The other big misconception, which needs to be cleared up in my opinion, is video on demand.” (His new movie,
  • The Frozen Ground, has a limited cinema release and will be available on demand, which, given the demand for on demand, Cage wishes critics would stop using as shorthand for failure.)
  • Also, his reputation for excess. “For a while there, it was the three Cs; castles, comic books and cars.” He gives me a doleful look. “I just can’t get that stuff off of me.”

Nic also doesn’t really know why he’s become an internet meme of sorts. His hair being a bird thus invalidating your argument, numerous Tumblr blogs like this of him as everyone and most notably, this mashup called Nicolas Cage Losing His S**t.

“Oh my god. I just can’t keep up with that stuff,” he says. “The internet has developed this thing about me – and I’m not even a computer guy, you know? I don’t know why it is happening. I’m trying not to… lemme say this: I’m now of the mindset that, when in Rome, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.”

Most of it seems affectionate, I suggest.

“Well,” a sudden, sardonic smile, “it is, but with enormous amounts of irony. Affection loaded with irony.”

He then wanted everyone to know that he’s in on the joke. Nic talked about his role in Wicker Man and said he and everyone else knew how absurd the movie was.

And then there’s The Wicker Man, the recent Neil LaBute remake that I didn’t think was as appalling as everyone else did. “The issue with The Wicker Man is there’s a need by some folks in the media to think that we’re not in on the joke. But you don’t go around doing the things that character does – in a bear suit – and not know it’s absurd. It is absurd. Now, originally I wanted to play that cop with a handlebar moustache and like a really stiff suit, and the producers wouldn’t let me do it.” Oh, Nic! “And then you would have known how in on it we were, Neil and myself. The fact that that movie has been so lambasted means there’s an inner trembling and power to that movie. It has become an electromagnetic movie! And so I love it.”

Sadly, he didn’t end the interview by screaming, “No, not the bees. Not the bees!” But I bet he would have if The Guardian threw a beehive at him like any other Nic Cage fan would have. Rookie mistake.

There’s also one last thing I wanted to mention. Nic explained why he started buying castles and mansions at one point. He said they were investments.

“I had to put the money somewhere, and I was a big believer in real estate, and I got caught up in that bubble that exploded. I thought it was real. I didn’t trust stocks and I didn’t trust just leaving it in the bank. I believed in real estate. So now I’m working through all that.”

So someone needs to sit Nic down and explain to him that when people say real estate is a wise investment, they aren’t talking about luxury houses and places where they film The Game of Thrones. They’re talking cheap $200k houses in the suburbs where the mortgage is covered by rent.

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