A Coppola Words On Nicolas Cage

Posted on March 24, 2009 by


Brien Hopkins
[The Man Shark]

“I am not a demon. I am a lizard, a shark, a heat-seeking panther. I want to be Bob Denver on acid playing the accordion.”

– Nicolas Cage

face-offOver 60 feature length films under his belt, and Cage has yet to play a lizard, shark, heat-seeking panther, or Bob Denver. Though, he did manage to play a demon.

Scientist, fireman, treasure hunter, carjacker, con artist, Con Air-ist: these are the roles we’ve seen Cage fill, but there’s a sneaking resemblance between his diverse characters.

His characters are consistently quirky, middle-aged men -often eccentric- with awkward dispositions, and precarious hairdos. Cage often must save the day via some kooky method, like solving riddles, forecasting the weather, or spontaneously setting his skull aflame.

Sometimes he’s saving the future. Sometimes he’s saving the past. Sometimes he doesn’t have side burns. Sometimes he has a mustache. Sometimes he’s John Travolta. And one time, he was actually played by Tom Hanks (The Davinci Code‘s screen play has Cage written all over it). But make no mistake, Nicolas Cage is a man of many vaguely similar faces.

For example, in his latest movie, “Knowing,” Cage can predict the future, using a sophisticated numerical code. Can he crack the code, and prevent the future’s disasters? No. Seeing as, he failed to prevent the production of “Knowing.”

Wait a minute. Didn’t Nicolas Cage already do the whole ‘foresight’ rigmarole? Yes. In 2007, Cage starred in “Next,” the story of a low profile Vegas magician who can predict the future.

But let’s give the man some credit. Overlap is bound to occur between one actor and his constant barrage of hit-and-miss films. Sixty-three films in twenty-eight years, and seven more slated for 2009-2010, to be exact. Many people will see fewer films, in 2009-2010, than Cage will star in. What won’t Cage do? The Coppola heir must have some integrity. Right?


far left: Speckles, the mole, voiced by Nicolas Cage

This summer, Cage stars in “G-Force” voicing Speckles, the mole on a team of trained guinea pigs dispatched to stop a diabolical billionaire bent on taking over the world with household appliances.

Really? Really. And there’s more.

This fall, Cage plays Dr. Tenma, in “Astro Boy,” an animated adventure about a robotic boy, searching for purpose. Think “Pinocchio” with rockets. Dr. Tenma is Astroboy’s Japedo figure.

At least he’s branching out. When it comes to faces, Nicolas Cage knows what counts: quantity not quality. His reckless ambition to fill every feasible, often similar, role will continue to entertain audiences

Cage said it best himself:

“Hollywood didn’t know if I was an actor or a nut or if I was this crazy character I was playing. I had developed an image of being a little bit unusual, different and wild.”

There it is, folks. Straight out of the horse’s mouth. Let the case rest. But here’s hoping for that heat-seaking panther flick.

more work by Brien Hopkins at The Man Shark.