I’ve been looking forward to a second sit-down with Nicolas Cage since we met on the set of “Kick-Ass” in London. He’s a guy whose work I’ve been fond of since I saw “Valley Girl” theatrically. It’s been a thrill watching his filmography develop with pictures like “Peggy Sue Got Married” and “Raising Arizona” and “Vampire’s Kiss” and “Wild At Heart” and “Birdy,” just to name some of his early triumphs. At some point, he shifted gears and became the Jerry Bruckheimer Action Guy with movies like “The Rock” and “Con Air,” and he has certainly made movies both great and mystifying.
Right now, it seems to me that he’s in a bit of a career resurgence as far as public opinion goes. He’s always been busy, but you’d be hard-pressed to find staunch defenders of “Next” or “Bangkok Dangerous” or “G-Force.” I can understand why he would do any of those… even “G-Force”… but that doesn’t mean those are films I want to see or that I connect with when they’re released.
WIth “Kick-Ass,” he’s done great work, funny and real and sad and strange all at once, and he makes one of the most frightening variations on Batman so far onscreen.
With “Bad Lieutanant: Port Of Call New Orleans,” he’s playing with that image of him as a lunatic, and it’s a wry and knowing performance, a great collaboration with Werner Herzog.
And, of course, he’s the star of “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice,” where he plays the mentor to a fledgling young magician played by Jay Baruchel. He was at Wondercon to promote this film and “Kick-Ass” when I caught up with him backstage. He had a total of about twelve minutes for us, and we hit the ground running when we sat down to talk.
You can either watch the embed above or the larger version at this link.
My thanks to both Disney and Lionsgate for working to set up the time when I could sit down with Mr. Cage, and to him for agreeing to it. From our talks in London, I could tell that he’s not crazy about the press or about discussing his process in too much detail, so I know this isn’t his favorite thing to do. Even so, he’s a lot of fun to talk to, and I think it’s a pretty free-ranging conversation, even with a full-blown case of laryngitis all but strangling him throughout.
“Kick-Ass” opens April 16th, and “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” is in theaters exactly three months later, on July 16th.
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