The Wikipedia page for “List of The Simpsons guest stars” is so long that it’s actually two pages: one for seasons 1-20, and another for seasons 21-31 (season 32 premieres this Sunday, September 27). Basically, anyone who’s been even remotely famous between 1989 and now has been on The Simpsons. With a few exceptions, like when Bob Dylan, Neil Young, and Pearl Jam all “respectfully declined” to appear in the season seven classic “Homerpalooza.” (I shudder to think what Homer’s response to “Eddie Vedder, Pearl Jam” would have been). Nicolas Cage never turned The Simpsons down, but he has never voiced a character on the show, although he was considered for one.
I’ll give you a hint: don’t call him Grimey.
In response to a Twitter user asking whether Nicolas Cage is “a good actor, bad actor, or a good-bad actor,” former-The Simpsons writer Josh Weinstein wrote, “He’s a great actor who often makes weird choices. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t but I’d much rather watch him than some other actors who are more interested in looking ‘cool’ or only being the hero. I say God bless actors like him” (having recently seen Color Out of Space, I agree). He then tweeted some “little known” Simpsons trivia.
“Nicolas Cage is one of the only other actors we considered asking to play Frank Grimes, before we realized @HankAzaria would be the ultimate Grimey,” Weinstein wrote. “And Hank’s performance was one of the best in the show’s history.”
Azaria’s Grimes is one of the show’s best one-time performances (Frank Grimes, Jr. does not count), up there with Albert Brooks as Hank Scorpio. Still, it’s fun to imagine what Nicolas Cage saying “I live in a single room above a bowling alley and below another bowling alley” would sound like. Obviously he’d be great at the freak out scene.
Little known Simpsons trivia:
Nicolas Cage is one of the only other actors we considered asking to play Frank Grimes, before we realized @HankAzaria would be the ultimate Grimey. And Hank's performance was one of the best in the show's history. https://t.co/g9jEQP5yWU
— Josh Weinstein (@Joshstrangehill) September 23, 2020