There’s already a bevvy of reasons that Ghost Rider 2 is going to be terrible, not the least of which being the staggering ineptitude of the original. Follow that up with the recent news from Vulture that Nic Cage is doing the sequel simply to kill time and earn a paycheck before Disney gets cracking on National Treasure 3, and you can rest assured that the passionless follow-up with be terrible in the worst ways..

It’s not unheard of for actors to take on a role purely so a paycheck with seven zeros attached will show up in their mailbox, but Cage has bigger problems. His mounting financial woes have grown into the tens of millions and he can’t afford to take time off lest he get tracked down by the IRS, leaving him with no choice but to snatch up any cheap roles that come his way.

Fortunately for Cage, Sony legally has to get rolling on GH2 before November lest the rights to the film default back to Marvel, now under Disney’s massive umbrella. This works out for both parties as it puts money in Cage’s account and keeps the franchise at Sony at least for another few years. Why Sony would want to hang onto it after the critical joke it became is another story altogether.

Cage is taking a paycut--down to $7 million from his usual $20mil-- to reprise his role as Johnny Blaze as well as his role in Trespass, a thriller costarring Nicole Kidman. He’s expecting his $20mil quote to be met for National Treasure 3 and is just biding his time until then, but “then” is still an undetermined time especially after Cage and director Jon Turteltaub flopped with The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, which I found entertaining.

For better or worse, we’re going to be getting a just-for-the-money Ghost Rider 2 regardless of how few people are asking for it. Maybe if enough people donate $20 to Cage he’ll decide against the whole thing altogether. It’s up to you, America.

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