He truly is a national treasure.
Nic Cage’s acting career has been as wild and crazy as his most notable roles. From action hero, to Oscar winner, to countless memes and now … pulling a full-blown John Malkovich by playing himself in a bizarre meta-comedy for Lionsgate called “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent.” At this point he is simply a fixed point in pop culture.
But now he can add a new status: beloved Reddit star.
Cage had recently participated in a Reddit: Ask Me Anything, and his wholesome responses have struck a chord with both fans—he prefers to call them “loyal film enthusiasts”—and critics alike. Like most of the things he does, it’s become a bona fide moment.
One person wrote, “I didn't really know much about Nic Cage before the AMA honestly, but I walked about from it thinking how insightful and genuine he seemed. I have a lot more respect for him now (not that I didn't before, I just thought he came across as a really sincere person). He seems like a really good dude on top of everything else. It was a REALLY good AMA."
Here are some of the best insights:
For one thing, the guy is truly an artist, with a genuine love for his craft. He’s studied Kabuki performance, for crying out loud—core curriculum for a theater nerd.
Just read his thoughtful response to a compliment on his performance in the movie “Pig,” which tells the story of a lonely truffle hunter who leaves his wilderness home in Oregon in search of his beloved foraging hog.
“‘Pig’ was an absolutely incredible film, what drew you to that project, and why do you think that it struck a chord with so many people?” — speakerboxxed
“Thank you. I was interested in returning to a more quiet, naturalistic style of film performance, having done a series of more operatic performance styles. The movie feels rather like a folk song to me or a poem, and the character of Rob was contending with tremendous grief and self imposed isolation and I think we as a group of people experiencing a pandemic in 2020-21 we’re probably also having similar feelings of loss and isolation and it communicated to a nerve we were all experiencing. It's one of my favorite movies, and it's probably my best work.” — N.C.
“Pig” turned out to be one of the three films Nicolas Cage would choose to be preserved for posterity, along with “Bringing Out the Dead” and “Leaving Las Vegas.”
He also doesn’t take his success for granted.
When asked which of his movie quotes he hated the most when heard in public, the actor simply responded:
“I don’t have a problem with any of the quotes. I’m glad they remember the movie.” — N.C.
Though we’ve seen him play a face-swapping terrorist, a treasure-hunting historian and a charming arms dealer, Nic Cage really just wants to play a sea captain. And not just any sea caption, but Captain Nemo from Jules Verne’s classic novels.
Why? “Because of the character’s love of the ocean that I share with him,” Cage wrote.
There were a few really fun behind-the-scenes bits of trivia. For instance, ever wonder what happened to that iconic snakeskin jacket from “Wild At Heart?”
Well, according to Cage, his co-star Laura Dern has it.
“[Laura] was such an enormous part of Wild at Heart that I felt it belonged to her. But now I wish I had given it to my son instead. I would've liked him to have it. But it's okay, Laura has it.” — N.C.
Of course, though many questions were craft and career related, a few mundane inquiries stuck out, such as:
“What’s your favorite pasta shape?” — JaggedOnomatomania
Answer: A rare “square tube pasta” only seen once at an Italian restaurant in San Francisco 25 years ago.
Not everyone can make pasta sound fascinating. But Cage did.
When asked what Cage’s favorite non-work-related hobbies were, he replied that, where everything ultimately informs his works (again, a true thespian!) he does enjoy reading, watching cinema and exercise.
The guy’s also a romantic. He shared a story about spending $2000 (a gift from grandma, no less) on his prom date. Chauffeur-driven limo, tux, four-course meal, the works. According to Cage it was “money well spent.”
Lastly, when it comes to his favorite movies, none of them are movies he’s worked on. That honor goes to "Apocalypse Now" and "Spirited Away."
The AMA turned out to be a lovely event for everyone involved. Including Cage, who said in his follow up interview:
“That was the highlight of my day. We did it together, and I thought it was a terrific interview. With all the folks that asked me questions, they were really great questions, really thoughtful, and I was deeply touched."
Perhaps massive talent isn’t so unbearable after all. Especially when handled with humor and grace.
If you haven't seen the trailer for Cage’s new movie yet, you can do so below. Buckle up.
And by the way, in case anyone is wondering: yes, he would "gladly" do "Face Off 2."
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