10 Awesomely Weird Facts About Nicolas Cage


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It’s not wrong to say that Nicolas Cage is one of the most fascinating figures in Hollywood. Nephew of legendary director Francis Ford Coppola, Cage was inspired by James Dean to get into the acting biz as a teenager, and in the years since has become an Academy Award winner and the subject of Internet worship. Here are ten of the most entertainingly bizarre Nicolas Cage facts we know.

10. China Thinks He’s the Best Actor in the World

Cage has taken home a number of awards for his work in American films – an Oscar for Leaving Las Vegas in 1995, for example – but nothing beats the honor that the Huading Awards bestowed on him in 2013. How does “Best Global Actor In Motion Pictures” strike you? That’s the kind of award that really opens doors in Hollywood.

9. He Sued Kathleen Turner Because She Said He Stole a Dog

Hollywood is a notoriously lawsuit-happy place, but this one is bizarre by any standards. In 2008, Kathleen Turner published her memoir, Send Yourself Roses, and a chunk of it dealt with her experience working with Cage on Peggy Sue Got Married. Turner claimed that her co-star was once busted by the cops for swiping a Chihuahua. Cage protested, sued, and eventually won a public apology.

8. He Once Woke Up Next to a Naked Man

No, not in the way you think. This bizarre story happened when Cage was living in Orange County with his wife. He woke up one night to discover a man, completely naked except for Cage’s leather jacket, sitting on the foot of his bed eating a Fudgesicle. The actor managed to convince the obviously disturbed man to leave the house without incident, but he moved his family out of the house soon after.

7. He Once Did Mushrooms with His Cat

You’d be forgiven for thinking that Nicolas Cage has done a fair amount of psychoactive drugs in his day, but so far we only have one confirmed story. In 2010, he told David Letterman a story about his pet cat Louis getting into a bag of shrooms he had laying around and tripping out, and how Cage decided that the sociable thing to do would be to do some as well to keep him company.

6. He Will Be Buried in a Pyramid

As a celebrity, you need to think about what’s going to happen after you die. You need to keep your corpse secure from grave-robbers and crazed fans, and Nicolas Cage is set in that department. He’s got a nine foot tall stone pyramid in one of New Orleans’ most famous cemeteries that his body will be interred within.

5. He Had Two Teeth Pulled For a Movie

While filming Birdy, the 1984 flick about a traumatized Vietnam vet obsessed with flying, Cage felt like he needed to understand “real pain” to get into his character. As a result, he went to a dentist and had two of his teeth pulled. They were baby teeth and needed to come out, but Cage demanded they not use anesthetic so he could feel it.

4. He Eats Animals Based on How They Have Sex

Weird diets are a staple of Hollywood stars, but few celebrities manage their plates quite like Nicolas Cage. The actor only eats animals that are “dignified” when they mate, like birds and fish. He refuses to eat any living thing that has sex in a way he doesn’t find attractive. That’s quite a thing to tell a chef.

3. His Acting Technique Is Called “Nouveau Shamantic”

Describing the acting methodology of Nicolas Cage using normal human language is an exercise in futility. That’s because he’s developed his own, totally unique way of getting into character, which he calls “Nouveau Shamantic.” If you want to learn all of his secrets, good news: he’s planning on writing a book to tell you all about it.

2. He Had a Mime Stalker

If you’re famous, it’s kind of a given that you’re going to have to deal with obsessed fans every once in a while. As befits a star with the weirdness quotient of Nicolas Cage, he had a totally bizarre stalker: a mime. While filming Bringing out the Dead, an obsessed Cage fan showed up multiple times on the set, pantomiming a number of weird action until the actor got security to finally keep him out.

1. He Once Had a Pet Octopus

Nicolas Cage is notorious for his profligate spending, blowing huge sums on castles, yachts, a jet and a T-rex skull. So when it came time for him to get a pet for his house, no dog or cat would do. Instead, the actor dropped a bundle on an octopus, telling the press that he needed it to “help him with his acting.” Your guess is as good as ours on how exactly that works.

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Weird Roles

Anthony Michael Hall’s Most Rotten Movies

Catch Anthony Michael Hall in Weird Science on Friday at 8P on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Universal/Everett Collection

Anthony Michael Hall was the quintessential ’80s nerd. We love him in classics like The Breakfast Club and National Lampoon’s Vacation. But even the brainiest among us has his weak spots. In honor of Weird Science airing this Rotten Friday, we analyze Hall’s worst movies.

Weird Science (1985) 56%

A low point for John Hughes, Weird Science is way too wacky for its own good. Anthony Michael Hall’s Gary and his pal Wyatt (Ilan Mitchell-Smith) create the “perfect woman.” Supernatural chaos ensues. The film costars a young Bill Paxton, floppy disks, and a general disconnect from all reality.

The Caveman’s Valentine (2001) 46%

This ambitious drama starring Samuel L. Jackson couldn’t live up to its rich premise. Jackson plays Romulus, a Juilliard-educated, paranoid schizophrenic who lives in a cave. Hall co-stars as Bob, a rich man, who wants to see Romulus play the piano. The plot centers around Romulus investigating a murder, but with so much going on, the movie never quite finds its rhythm.

All About the Benjamins (2002) 30%

Ice Cube plays a bounty hunter who teams up with Mike Epps’ con man to catch diamond thieves. Hall plays Lil J, a small-time drug dealer. It’s definitely a role we’ve never seen Hall in, but overall the movie isn’t funny or original enough to justify its violence.

Freddy Got Fingered (2001) 11%

This showcase for Tom Green’s goofy gross-out comedy is often hailed as one of the worst films of all time. Green plays Gord, a 20-something slacker, who dreams of having his own animated series. Hall is Dave Davidson, a CEO of an animation studio who eventually helps Gord find success. Too bad Tom Green wasn’t so lucky.

Johnny Be Good (1988) 0%

Hall plays against type as Johnny Walker, a star quarterback. Robert Downey Jr. is his best friend and Uma Thurman plays his devoted girlfriend. Despite the support of a future A-list cast, the movie lacks central conflict and charm. Or, as TV Guide put it, “Johnny be worthless.” Ouch.

Catch the “Too Rotten to Miss” Weird Science this Friday at 8P on IFC.

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Season 6: Episode 1: Pickathon

Binge Fest

Portlandia Season 6 Now Available On DVD

The perfect addition to your locally-sourced, artisanal DVD collection.

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End of summer got you feeling like:

Portlandia Toni Screaming GIF

Ease into fall with Portlandia‘s sixth season. Relive the latest exploits of Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein’s cast of characters, including Doug and Claire’s poignant breakup, Lance’s foray into intellectual society, and the terrifying rampage of a tsukemen Noodle Monster! Plus, guest stars The Flaming Lips, Glenn Danzig, Louis C.K., Kevin Corrigan, Zoë Kravitz, and more stop by to experience what Portlandia is all about.

Pick up a copy of the DVD today, or watch full episodes and series extras now on IFC.com and the IFC app.

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Byrning Down the House

Everything You Need to Know About the Film That Inspired “Final Transmission”

Documentary Now! pays tribute to "Stop Making Sense" this Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Cinecom/courtesy Everett Collection

This week Documentary Now! is with the band. For everyone who’s ever wanted to be a roadie without leaving the couch, “Final Transmission” pulls back the curtain on experimental rock group Test Pattern’s final concert. Before you tune in Wednesday at 10P on IFC, plug your amp into this guide for Stop Making Sense, the acclaimed 1984 Talking Heads concert documentary.

Put on Your Dancing Shoes

Hailed as one of the best concert films ever created, director Jonathan Demme (Silence of the Lambs) captured the energy and eccentricities of a band known for pushing the limits of music and performance.

Make an Entrance

Lead singer David Byrne treats the concert like a story: He enters an empty stage with a boom box and sings the first song on the setlist solo, then welcomes the other members of the group to the stage one song at a time.

Steal the Spotlight

David Byrne Dancing
Cinecom/Everett Collection

Always a physical performer, Byrne infuses the stage and the film with contagious joy — jogging in place, dancing with lamps, and generally carrying the show’s high energy on his shoulders.

Suit Yourself

Byrne makes a splash in his “big suit,” a boxy business suit that grows with each song until he looks like a boy who raided his father’s closet. Don’t overthink it; on the DVD, the singer explains, “Music is very physical, and often the body understands it before the head.”

View from the Front Row

Stop Making Sense Band On Stage
Cinecom/Everett Collection

Demme (who also helmed 1987’s Swimming to Cambodia, the inspiration for this season’s Documentary Now! episode “Parker Gail’s Location is Everything”) films the show by putting viewers in the audience’s shoes. The camera rarely shows the crowd and never cuts to interviews or talking heads — except the ones onstage.

Let’s Get Digital

Tina Weymouth Keyboard
Cinecom/Everett Collection

Stop Making Sense isn’t just a good time — it’s also the first rock movie to be recorded entirely using digital audio techniques. The sound holds up more than 30 years later.

Out of Pocket

Talk about investing in your art: Talking Heads drummer Chris Frantz told Rolling Stone that the members of the band “basically put [their] life savings” into the movie, and they didn’t regret it.

Catch Documentary Now!’s tribute to Stop Making Sense when “Final Transmission” premieres Wednesday, October 12 at 10P on IFC.

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