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Nicolas Cage Has A Theory Why ‘Film Enthusiasts’ Have Stuck With Him And His Movie Choices For 43 Years

In the upcoming buddy comedy satire The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent, Nicolas Cage plays a fictionalized (and exaggerated) version of the persona that pop culture has come to associate with Nic Cage. He’s super passionate. He’s kinda broke (in real life, Nic Cage is newly debt free). And he has a fanbase who is so obsessed with him and his work that one man (played by Pedro Pascal) is willing to pay Cage $1 million to come to his private birthday party… and maybe collaborate on a screenplay.

There is so much material that can be explored when analyzing Nicolas Cage’s body of work. We even singled out three Nic Cage movies you need to watch before heading out to see The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent. So when given the chance to sit down with the actor, I instead wanted to ask about his relationship WITH these fans who have allowed him to maintain a steady career for the better part of four decades. And right off the bat, Cage changed the name for his fans, explaining to CinemaBlend:

Let me speak to the concept of fandom and maybe switch the word out with ‘film enthusiast.’ I have been blessed to grow up with a group of very loyal film enthusiasts who have stuck with me over 43 years. When I make a movie, the characters I make, I design. Literally, design. I see in my head the moves, the facial expressions. Whether it be a ridiculous character or all of the way to a sublime moment. From the ridiculous to the sublime. And then, I try to infuse the character with emotional content – genuine, organic emotion and imagination. Because what I want to convey is something that those in the audience can relate to, and they know it’s true.

No one can accuse Nicolas Cage of ever giving less than 100 percent when he is committing to a role. He’s correct in saying that he breaks every character down to their core and builds them up in the vision that he has constructed (with collaboration from his chosen filmmaker). This helps to make him the perfect Nicolas Cage in his new movie. It also means he’s wildly convincing as a reclusive chef seeking to retrieve his pig in the aptly titled Pig

This emotional bond with the film enthusiasts traces back to Nicolas Cage’s own appreciation for the art form of acting, and his admiration for legendary actors who have come before him. He continues:

That’s because I am a fan. I am a film enthusiast. And I know what I felt like when I saw (Marlon) Brando in his movies, and I thought, ‘Man, I know you. I know what you’re feeling. I’ve been there.’ And I felt like I had my own private, secret connection with him that was just ours. I want to have that connection with film enthusiasts in the cinema. That’s just ours, you know? I may never meet you. But I know what you think is true, and you’re right.

This level of commitment to his roles, and the reactions felt by critics and fans, help explain why Nic Cage’s new The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent is rocking a 100% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes ahead of its opening. We’re likely not ever going to get a review on the movie from the man himself, as Nic Cage has valid reasons why he won’t watch Massive Talent. Maybe he’s still lamenting the fact that National Treasure 3 fell apart before they got the chance to make it. 

The box office currently is being dominated by Sonic and, to a lesser extent, Morbius. But there’s plenty of room for Cage to make some noise once The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent arrives on April 15, from Lionsgate. Use our up-to-date list to keep track of this opening, and all of the upcoming 2022 movies hitting theaters. 

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.