At 59 years old, Nicolas Cage has this physical status:
Cage made his acting debut in the 1981 television pilot The Best of Times, which was never picked up by ABC. His film debut followed in 1982, with a minor role as an unnamed co-worker of Judge Reinhold's character in the coming-of-age film Fast Times at Ridgemont High, having originally auditioned for Reinhold's part. His experience on the film was marred by cast members endlessly quoting his uncle's films, which inspired him to change his name. Cage's first starring role came opposite Deborah Foreman in the romantic comedy Valley Girl (1983), in which he played a punk who falls in love with the titular valley girl, a plot loosely inspired by Romeo and Juliet. The film was a modest box office success and has been branded a cult classic. He auditioned for the role of Dallas Winston in his uncle's film The Outsiders, based on S.E. Hinton's novel, but lost to Matt Dillon. Cage, however, would co-star in Coppola's adaptation of another Hinton novel, Rumble Fish, in that year.
In 1984, Cage appeared in three period films, none of which fared well at the box office. In the drama, Racing with the Moon (1984), Cage featured opposite Sean Penn as friends who are awaiting deployment to the U.S. Marine Corps. Coppola's crime drama The Cotton Club saw him play a fictionalized version of mob hitman Vincent "Mad Dog" Coll, earning praise from critic Paul Attanasio for "artully [using] his few moments to sketch a brawny, violent thug". His final release of the year was Alan Parker's drama Birdy, in which he starred with Matthew Modine as two close friends and their trauma inflicted by serving in the Vietnam War. Cage lost weight for the role and had two of his front teeth pulled out to appear disfigured. Despite massively underperforming at the box office, the film, and Cage and Modine's performances, received positive reviews, with The New York Times critic Janet Maslin writing, "Mr. Cage very sympathetically captures Al's urgency and frustration. Together, these actors work miracles with what might have been unplayable."
In 1986, Cage starred in the little-seen Canadian sports drama The Boy in Blue and his uncle's fantasy comedy Peggy Sue Got Married (1987) as the husband to Kathleen Turner's character, who has travelled back in time to their high school days. He then starred in the Coen brothers' crime comedy Raising Arizona (1987) as a dim-witted ex-con. Cage's biggest breakthrough came in 1987 with the romantic comedy Moonstruck, in which he starred alongside Cher as a hot-tempered baker who falls in love with his estranged brother's widowed fiancé. The film was a hit with critics and audiences alike, earning Cage a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy In his retrospective review, Roger Ebert wrote that he felt Cage's performance was worthy of an Oscar.
In 1989, Cage starred in the black comedy Vampire's Kiss as a man who falls in love with a vampire and soon begins to believe he himself is a vampire. The film was a major box office flop, but has developed a cult following largely due to Cage's surrealistic and over-the-top performance appearing in internet memes. Critic Vincent Canby felt the film was "dominated and destroyed by Mr. Cage's chaotic, self-indulgent performance". After filming the Italian drama Time to Kill (1989) in Zimbabwe, he starred in David Lynch's romantic crime film Wild at Heart (1990) with Laura Dern as a pair of lovers on the run from gangsters hired to kill Cage's character "Sailor" Ripley. Cage was drawn to the project because he was "always attracted to those passionate, almost unbridled romantic characters" and it allowed him to impersonate one of his heroes, Elvis Presley, in scenes in which Sailor sings. Wild at Heart received mixed reviews upon release, despite controversially winning the Palme d'Or at 1990 Cannes Film Festival. Cage would reunite with Lynch and Dern for the avant-garde concert performance Industrial Symphony No. 1.
Also in 1990, he starred as a helicopter pilot in the action film Fire Birds, which was panned by critics and negatively compared to Top Gun (1986). Cage's next film, the erotic thriller Zandalee (1991), was released direct-to-video in the United States, where it did not receive a theatrical release. His "goofy 'everyman'" performance in the romantic comedy Honeymoon in Vegas (1992) garnered some positive critical notices, including from Roger Ebert, who defended Cage amidst some critics finding his acting "excessive" and earned Cage his second Gloden Globe nomination. He hosted an episode of the variety show Saturday Night Live to promote the film, his only time hosting the show. None of Cage's three films in 1993—Deadfall (directed by his brother Christopher), Amos & Andrew and Red Rock West—performed well at the box office; though the last-mentioned neo-noir thriller in which he played a drifter mistaken for a hitman was lauded by critics. The comedy Guarding Tess (1994) paired Cage with Shirley MacLaine as a Secret Service agent protecting a former First Lady; however, it was dismissed as being derivative by some critics. He next starred alongside Bridget Fonda in the romantic comedy It Could Happen to You as a cash-strapped police officer who offers to share his lottery winnings with a waitress and then the much-criticized box office flop Christmas comedy Trapped in Paradise with the Saturday Night Live actors Jon Lovitz and Dana Carvey. According to Lovitz, Cage directed portions of the film because its director, George Gallo, offered little direction.
Cage's performance as a psychopathic criminal kingpin in the crime film Kiss of Death (1995) was seen by many critics as the film strongpoint, but his most acclaimed performance yet came in the drama Leaving Las Vegas as an alcoholic screenwriter who falls in love with a prostitute in Las Vegas. The role won Cage the Academy Award for Best Actor and Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama. His other nomination was for his portrayal of real-life screenwriter Charlie Kaufman and Kaufman's fictional twin Donald in Adaptation. Other Cage films included Martin Scorsese's 1999 New York City paramedic drama Bringing Out the Dead and Ridley Scott's 2003 black comedy crime film Matchstick Men, in which he played a con artist with obsessive–compulsive disorder. Most of Cage's movies that have achieved financial success were in the action/adventure genre. These include The Rock, in which Cage plays a young FBI chemical weapons expert who infiltrates Alcatraz Island in the hope of neutralizing a terrorist threat, Con Air, a film where he plays a former army ranger who has to stop hijackers on an airplane, Face/Off, a John Woo film where he plays both a hero and a villain, Gone in 60 Seconds, with Cage as a retired car thief, and World Trade Center, director Oliver Stone's film about the September 11 attacks. The suspense thriller 8mm (1999) is considered a cult film. He took the lead role in the 2001 film Captain Corelli's Mandolin and learned to play the mandolin from scratch for the part. He made his directorial debut with 2002's Sonny.
In his second-highest-grossing film to date, National Treasure, he plays an eccentric historian who goes on a dangerous adventure to find treasure hidden by the Founding Fathers of the United States. In 2005, two films he headlined, Lord of War and The Weather Man, failed to find a significant audience despite nationwide releases and good reviews for his performances. The 2006 remake of The Wicker Man was very poorly reviewed, and failed to make back its $40 million budget. The much-criticized Ghost Rider (2007), based on the Marvel Comics character, fared better, earning more than $45 million (the top earner) during its opening weekend and over $208 million worldwide through the weekend ending on March 25, 2007. Also in 2007, he had a small but notable role as the Chinese criminal mastermind Dr. Fu Manchu in Rob Zombie's fake trailer Werewolf Women of the S.S. from the B-movie double feature Grindhouse and starred in Next, which shared the concept of a glimpse into an alternate timeline with Cage's film, The Family Man (2000).
In November 2007, Cage was spotted backstage at a Ring of Honor wrestling show in New York City researching for the lead role for The Wrestler. However, Cage dropped out of production shortly afterward because he felt that he did not have enough time to prepare for the role and director Darren Aronofsky preferred Mickey Rourke for the lead role. Rourke would go on to receive an Academy Award nomination for his performance. In an interview with /Film, Aronofsky said of Cage's decision to leave the film that "Nic was a complete gentleman, and he understood that my heart was with Mickey and he stepped aside. I have so much respect for Nic Cage as an actor and I think it really could have worked with Nic but ... you know, Nic was incredibly supportive of Mickey and he is old friends with Mickey and really wanted to help with this opportunity, so he pulled himself out of the race."
In 2008, Cage appeared as Joe, a contract killer who undergoes a change of heart while on a work outing in Bangkok, in the film Bangkok Dangerous. The film is shot by the Pang Brothers and has a distinctly South-East Asian flavor. In 2009, Cage starred in the science fiction thriller Knowing, directed by Alex Proyas. In the film, he plays an MIT professor who examines the contents of a time capsule unearthed at his son's elementary school. Startling predictions found inside the capsule that has already come true lead him to believe that the world is going to end at the close of the week and that he and his son are somehow involved in the destruction. The film received mainly negative reviews but was the box office winner on its opening weekend.
Also in 2009, Cage starred in the film Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans, directed by acclaimed German director Werner Herzog. He portrayed a corrupt police officer with gambling, drug and alcohol addictions. The film was very well received by critics, holding a rating of 87% positive reviews on review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes. Cage was lauded for his performance, with Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune writing "Herzog has found his ideal interpreter, a performer whose truth lies deep in the artifice of performance: ladies and gentlemen, Nicolas Cage, at his finest." This film reunited Cage with Eva Mendes, who played his love interest in Ghost Rider. In 2010, Cage starred in The Sorcerer's Apprentice, in which he played the sorcerer, and the next year, headlined the period piece Season of the Witch, as a 14th-century knight transporting a woman accused of causing the Black Plague to a monastery. In 2011, Cage reprised his role in Ghost Rider's sequel Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance.
He voiced the character Grug Crood in the animated film The Croods, which was released in 2013. The Croods received positive reviews from critics and was a box office success grossing $585 million against a budget of $135 million. In the same year he starred as main character in The Frozen Ground, a thriller crime drama film directed and written by Scott Walker in his directorial debut, based on the crimes of real-life Alaskan serial killer Robert Hansen: The film depicts an Alaskan State Trooper, played by Cage, seeking to apprehend Hansen by partnering with a young woman, who escaped from Hansen's clutches. The film has received mixed reviews though Cage's performance was cited as a highlight and solid.
In 2013 he also starred in Joe, an independent crime drama film directed and co-produced by David Gordon Green, adaptation from Larry Brown's 1991 novel of the same name. In this film Nicolas Cage is a tormented man who hires a 15-year-old boy (played by Tye Sheridan) and protects him from his abusive father. The film premiered at the 70th Venice International Film Festival on August 30, 2013, with a subsequent screening at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. It was a box office flop, grossing only $2.36 million from a $4 million budget, but received critical acclaim from critics, who praised Cage's performance and Green's direction.
The 2016 black comedy Dog Eat Dog, Cage's second film with Paul Schrader, reunited him with Willem Dafoe (after Wild at Heart) as a pair of ex-convicts hired to kidnap a baby. The film had its premiere as the closing entry for the Directors' Fortnight section at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival on May 20, 2016. It was released on November 4, 2016, in the United States. Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian gave the film 4 out of 5 stars, writing, "It's the right director for the right project and the result is Schrader's best for years: a lairy, nasty, tasty crime thriller built on black-comic chaos." Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter wrote, "A rare film to have been shot in Cleveland, Dog Eat Dog definitely looks like it was shot on the cheap but puts what it needs to up on the screen with vigor and wit."
Cage starred alongside Selma Blair and Anne Winters in Brian Taylor's horror comedy film, Mom and Dad, which premiered in the Midnight Madness section at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival. It was released in theaters on January 19, 2018, and received positive reviews from critics, with review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes defining his performance as "over-the-top." Director John Waters appreciated the film, naming Mom and Dad as one of the best movies of 2018, placing it fourth on his personal top list.
In 2018, Cage starred in the action thriller film Mandy, which premiered on January 19 at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. Nick Allen of RogerEbert.com praised the movie, writing that "for all of the endless feral performances that Cage has given, in movies good, bad and forgettable, Cosmatos' style-driven, '80s-tastic passion for weird worlds and characters takes full advantage of Cage's greatness, and then some." In October, Mandy's producer Elijah Wood announced the intention to sizing up an Oscar campaign for Nicolas Cage and for composer Jóhann Jóhannsson (who died in February of that year) but the film was disqualified because it was also released on VOD on September 14.
Later that year, Cage voiced Superman in the animated film Teen Titans Go! To the Movies. He had originally been slated to portray Superman in Tim Burton's canceled Superman film, Superman Lives, in the 1990s. He voiced an alternate monochromatic 1930s universe version of Peter Parker / Spider-Man Noir in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018). Cage based his vocal performance on films of Humphrey Bogart, James Cagney, and Edward G. Robinson.
On January 28, 2019, Viktor and Irina Yelchin premiered a documentary about their son Anton Yelchin, Love, Antosha, at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival. The documentary was directed by Garret Price and contains various interviews with some of Anton's friends and collaborators like Kristen Stewart, J. J. Abrams, Chris Pine, Jennifer Lawrence, Jodie Foster, John Cho and Martin Landau. Cage starred as the Narrator of the film, reading various Anton's writings.
In December 2018, it was announced that Cage had signed to play the lead role for Richard Stanley's Color Out of Space, based on the short story "The Colour Out of Space" by H. P. Lovecraft. This was Stanley's first feature film directed since his firing from The Island of Dr. Moreau (1996). Color Out of Space premiered on September 7, 2019, in the Midnight Madness portion of the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival, where Cage was awarded for his role with the Creative Coalition's Spotlight Initiative Award. Following select preview screenings on January 22, the film was released in 81 theaters in the United States on January 24, 2020.
In December 2018, it was announced that Sion Sono was working on his first overseas production and English-language debut, Prisoners of the Ghostland, starring Nicolas Cage. Cage defined the film "might be the wildest movie I've ever made." Its plot revolves around a notorious criminal, Hero (played by Cage), who is sent to rescue the governor's adopted granddaughter, who has disappeared into a dark region called Ghostland. The film had its world premiere at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival on January 31, 2021.
In May 2020 it was announced that Cage would be playing the role of Joe Exotic in a scripted eight-episode Tiger King series, written and executive produced by Dan Lagana. It was announced that the project was scrapped in July 2021.
In April 2013, DreamWorks Animation announced a sequel to the film The Croods. In September 2013, it was confirmed that Nicolas Cage would reprise his role in the sequel as Grug from the first film. The Croods: A New Age, directed by Joel Crawford, was released theatrically in the United States on November 25, 2020.
Cage produced and starred in the 2021 film Pig, and received critical acclaim for his performance. He gained further acclaim for portraying a fictionalized version of himself in the 2022 action comedy film The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent.
In November 2021, Cage was cast in the Universal Classic Monsters spin-off film, Renfield. Cage will feature in a supporting role, to Nicholas Hoult's titular R.M. Renfield, as Dracula. The film will be directed by Chris McKay, with a script by Ryan Ridley, from an original story by Robert Kirkman. McKay and Kirkman will also produce the feature film alongside David Alpert, Bryan Furst and Sean Furst. The project will be a joint-venture production between Skybound Entertainment, and Universal Pictures. Principal photography began in early 2022.
Cage made his directorial debut in 2002 with Sonny, a low-budget drama starring James Franco as a male prostitute whose mother (Brenda Blethyn) serves as his pimp. Cage had a small role in the film, which received poor reviews and a short run in a limited number of theaters. Cage's producing career includes Shadow of the Vampire, the first effort from Saturn Films.
In early December 2006, Cage announced at the Bahamas International Film Festival that he planned to curtail his future acting endeavors to pursue other interests. On The Dresden Files for the Sci-Fi Channel, Cage is listed as the executive producer.
Cage, an avid comic book fan, auctioned a collection of 400 vintage comics through Heritage Auctions for over $1.6 million in 2002. In 2007, he created a comic book with his son Weston, called Voodoo Child, which was published by Virgin Comics. Cage is a fan and collector of painter and underground comic artist Robert Williams. He has written introductions for Juxtapoz magazine and purchased the painting Death on the Boards.
Nicolas Cage talks RETIREMENT ahead of turning 60 as he reveals he only has 'three or four movies left in me'
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Lisa Marie Presley’s third husband, Nicolas Cage, is opening up about her tragic loss.
In a statement to the Hollywood Reporter on Thursday, the actor revealed he is “heartbroken” following the 54-year-old’s sudden death, as he expressed: