Biography Nicolas Cage, The Croods, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance

Nicolas Cage filmography and biography

Date of birth: 7 January 1964, Long Beach, California, USA

Nicolas Cage biography

The son of comparative literature professor August Coppola (a brother of director Francis Ford Coppola) and dancer/choreographer Joy Vogelsang, Cage changed his name early in his career to make his own reputation, succeeding brilliantly with a host of classic, quirky roles by the late 1980s.

Initially studying theatre at Beverly Hills High (though he dropped out at 17), he secured a bit part in Fast Times at Ridgemont High -- most of which was cut, dashing his hopes and leading to a job selling popcorn at the Fairfax Theater, thinking that would be the only route to a movie career. But a job reading lines with auditionees for uncle Francis' Rumble Fish landed him a role in that film, followed by the punk-rocker in Valley Girl, which was released first and truly launched his career.

His one-time passion for method acting reached a personal limit when he smashed a street-vendor's remote-control car to achieve the sense of rage needed for his gangster character in The Cotton Club.

In his early 20s, he dated Jenny Wright (I) for two years and later linked to Uma Thurman. After a relationship of several years with Christina Fulton, a model, they split amicably and share custody of a son, Weston Cage (b.1992).

Nicolas Cage trivia

- Half German, half Italian.
- 2000: Filed divorce papers in February, withdrew them in April.
- October 1997: Ranked #40 in Empire (UK) magazine's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time" list.
- Was engaged to Kristen Zang.
- Nephew of Francis Ford Coppola and Talia Shire.
- Got Johnny Depp his first acting job.
- Close friend of Tom Waits, Crispin Glover and Rush (II) drummer Neil Peart.
- Stage name taken from comic book character Luke Cage.
- Owns a Lamborghini that used to belong to Prince Ali-Reza Pahlavi, the former Shah of Iran.
- Brother of Marc Coppola and Christopher Coppola (I).
- Grandson of Carmine Coppola.
- Proposed to Patricia Arquette on the day he met her in the early 1980s. Arquette thought he was a bit strange but played along with his antics by creating a list of things Cage would have to fulfill to win her. When he started to work his way through the list, Arquette got scared and avoided him. They met again many years later and later went on to marry.
- 1997: He lived in a fake castle on the outskirts Los Angeles. He wants to import an authentic one from overseas.
- Loves to improvise, ocassionally to the annoyance of other cast members.
- Collects comic books and sees them as being today's equivalent of mythology.
- The Wild at Heart movie poster lists his name as both "Nicolas Cage" and "Nicholas Cage".
- Ranked #37 in Premiere's 100 most powerful people in Hollywood in 1998.
- 1984: Listed as one of 12 "Promising New Actors of 1984" in John Willis' Screen World, Vol. 36.
- Suffers from vertigo.
- Tim Burton (I) cast Cage in his doomed Superman project. Cage even did fittings of the costume.
- On his upper back he has a tattoo of monitor lizard with a top hat.
- 2001: Announced that he is dating Lisa Marie Presley, daughter of the late Elvis Presley. They later married.
- Cousin of Robert Schwartzman, who changed his name to Robert Schwartzman-Cage inspired by Nicolas.
- May 2001: Awarded an Honory Doctorate in Fine Arts by California State University, Fullerton. He spoke at the commencement.
- Father August Coppola, formerly a professor at Cal State Long Beach and Dean of Creative Arts at San Francisco State University
- During an A&E Biography on him, the host explained that Cage was director Sam Raimi's first choice to play Norman Osborn/Green Goblin in the movie Spider-Man. Apparently this was before he met Willem Dafoe.
- Graduated UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television.
- Cousin of Sofia Coppola, Jason Schwartzman and Roman Coppola.
- On The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, he told Jay that he took the name "Cage" from a comic book character named Luke Cage, the "first black superhero." This is not accurate; the first black superhero in mainstream comics was Marvel's Black Panther, introduced in 1966. Luke Cage, introduced in 1972, was also preceded by: Marvel's Falcon, introduced in 1969; the black western hero, Lobo, from Dell Comics in 1965 (the first black character to star in his own title); the title character of "Waku, Prince of the Bantu," an African chieftain, introduced as part of the Atlas Comics anthology title "Jungle Tales" in 1954. When asked which of the powers he would prefer to have, he said flight was his desire.
- Has a son, Weston Cage (with actress Christina Fulton), born 26 December, 1990.
- One of three actors (with Lee Marvin [Cat Ballou] and Peter Sellers [Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb]) with an Oscar nomination for playing multiple characters in a film (in Adaptation., he plays two characters, Donald and Charlie). Marvin is the only one who actually won one for a double role.
- Former cousin, by marriage, of director Spike Jonze.
- Met his future wife, Alice Kim Cage, at a sushi bar where she was a waitress. She was only 20-years-old at the time they married.
- Went to the same high school as Angelina Jolie, Michael Klesic, Lenny Kravitz, David Schwimmer (I), Jonathan Silverman (I), Gina Gershon, Rhonda Fleming, Jackie Cooper (I), Rob Reiner, Antonio Sabato Jr., Pauly Shore, Michael Tolkin, Betty White (I), Corbin Bernsen, Elizabeth Daily, Albert Brooks (I) and Crispin Glover.
- Ate a real cockroach in the film Vampires Kiss, it reportedly took three takes. He once said about the experience, "Every muscle in my body didn't want to do it, but I did it anyway."
- Attended Justin-Siena High School in Napa, CA, during the early '80s.
- His is (along with his cousin Sofia Coppola) the third generation of Oscar winners in the Coppola family. His uncle, Francis Ford Coppola and his grandfather, Carmine Coppola, are the other two generations. They are the second family to do so, the first family is the Hustons - Anjelica Huston, John Huston (I) and Walter Huston.
- Nick and his wife, Alice Kim Cage, had a son, Kal-el Coppola Cage, on October 3, 2005 in New York City. Just as Nick was named after a comic book character, "Luke Cage", so he has named his son after the comic book character "Kal-el" (aka Superman).
- Trains in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Royce Gracie
- Referred to as the "Jazz musician of acting" by David Lynch (I).
- Former stepfather of Patricia Arquette's son Enzo
- Former stepfather of Riley Keough.
- July 2006: Bought Schloss Neidstein, a mini castle in the Bavarian village of Etzelwang.
- After his first film role (in Fast Times at Ridgemont High), he adopted the stage name of Cage, because he wanted to assure himself that any success he had was based on his own merits, not the fame of his uncle, Francis Ford Coppola.
- Was a very close friend of late Johnny Ramone.
- Big fan of Elvis Presley.
- Considered "Blue" before settling on "Cage" as his surname.
- His grandmother originates from Cochem/Mosel, Germany.
- 2006: He purchased a home on the former property of John Wayne (I) in Newport Beach, CA, for a record-setting $24 million.
- Said in a Reader's Digest interview that his wife, Alice, is into designing jewelry and has no interest whatsoever in being an actress.
- Offered the role of Green Goblin/Norman Osborn in Spider-Man.
- Was originally considered for the role of Brad Hamilton in Fast Times at Ridgemont High, but after his audition the studio thought his performance was too dark and the role went, instead, to Judge Reinhold. Additionally, Cage was 17 at the time and could not work as many hours as actors over 18. In this film, he is credited under the name Nicolas Coppola for the first and only time.
- 1999: Was among the guests at the wedding of Spike Jonze and Sofia Coppola. Others were George Lucas (I), Jason Schwartzman, Bo Barrett, Kirsten Dunst and Tom Waits.
- Auditioned for the role of Joel in Risky Business, but the role eventually went to Tom Cruise.
- He said he realized that all great movie stars, such as Spencer Tracy (I), had had recognizable voices, so he has stylized his to be distinctive.
- Great-grandson of Francesco Pennino.
- Owns a home in New Orleans.
- Devoted Elvis Presley fan that he is, in Wild at Heart he performed the Elvis classic "Love Me" with uncanny aplomb.
- Former son-in-law of Elvis Presley and Priscilla Presley.
- 2007: Bought Midford Castle (a big house, not a real castle) near Bath, England. Purchase price was in the region of £5 million (about $10 million).
- In 2006, he donated $2 million to Amnesty International for a fund to help child soldiers.
- Owns homes in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, New Orleans, and New York City.
- Owns the rights of the original The Courtship of Eddies Father movie, for which he bought the rights from Ted Turner (I). He was going to use that as a new movie. Since Cage was busy with other projects, the movie didn't come to any fruition.
- While making an appearance on Late Show with David Letterman for the film Knowing, he mentioned that he is fascinated with hang-gliding.
- Is an alumnus of the children's theatre group MET2 along with Adam Lambert (II), Sofia Coppola, Matt McFarland, Kylie Tyndall, Keaton Tyndall, Vivian Bayubay, Nathan Norton, Derek Klena, Lauren Klena, & Roma Watkins.
- In addition to the homes he owns, he also owns a home in Middletown, Rhode Island. Purchased in August 2007.
- Son of August Coppola and Joy Vogelsang.
- Lives in Los Angeles, Malibu, Newport Beach, San Francisco, California and Las Vegas, Nevada.

Nicolas Cage quotes

- To be a good actor you have to be something like a criminal, to be willing to break the rules to strive for something new.
- There's a fine line between the Method actor and the schizophrenic.
- 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.
- [about his marriage to Lisa Marie Presley] I'm sad about this, but we shouldn't have been married in the first place.
- 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.
- I'm at the point now where I know I'm doing something right when a movie gets mixed reviews, because then I'm not in the box. I don't want to make it too easy for people and I don't want to make it too easy for myself. I want to try something unusual. I feel good about the bad reviews because I feel like I've affected them on some level. They may not know what I was trying to do but they felt something
- I want to make all kinds of movies. I do want to make big movies that are a lot of fun to go to, but I also want to make movies that are going to stimulate some thought and maybe raise some awareness. And so please don't think you're gonna go on a roller-coaster ride with those movies.
- It's very risky for an actor who's a bankable star to make pictures like The Weather Man or Lord of War because they inevitably promote them like big studio releases. And they're not big studio movies, they're more edgy, thought-provoking, independent-spirited films. What happens is, it goes into the computer, and everyone says they can't open the movie because they thought it was X when it actually was Y.
- I needed to change my name just to liberate myself and find out I could do it without walking into a Hollywood casting office with the name Coppola.
- [Pablo Picasso] said art is a lie that tells the truth. What if you just want to tell the truth and not lie about it?
- It's good to make movies that are tragedies, where people can think about things in life that are undeniable, that everyone has to deal with. But at the same time, it's also healing to make movies that are entertaining, that are a lot of fun, where you don't have to think about your problems.
- When I did Vampires Kiss, I got so wound up. It was so important to me that this vision I had of Peter Lowe's character get on film exactly the way that I wanted it, that I frankly don't think I was very easy for anyone to live with. Certainly, I was not easy for myself to live with. I remember that I wasn't drinking or anything at the time. One night I felt so wound up that I was about to snap. I ordered a martini. And I just relaxed, and I could tell my body really needed a rest. From then on, I learned you can do good work without torturing yourself.
- What happens is, you become different people in your path as an actor. When I was doing those things, I was a very new actor. I didn't have a lot of training, and I was trying to make some sort of impact, because that was what was important for me at the time - to get on the map. There were things I would do that were more shocking, or approaches I would do to try and live the character, because I didn't have the training. But then, as I went on, I started to find other methods, ways to get into characters that weren't exactly destroying my life. (On the wild eccentrics he used to get into character earlier in his career)
- I remember when I met Johnny Depp, he was a guitar player from Florida, and he had no idea he could be an actor. I said, "I really think you are an actor, that you have that ability." That was just from playing one game of Monopoly with him. I sent him to my agent and he has gone on to carve out a successful career.
- There is a method of thought that says it's better to stay mysterious, make yourself an event so when you come out, people have a hunger to see you again. I can think of some superstars who adopt that principle, where they are very selective. But we are all going to get older, and there is something to be said about doing some of your best work when you are younger, when you still have that virility, something visceral and raw. I've heard there have been some actors who've regretted not doing more work when they were under fifty. (On why he works so much)
- [on making his character in Knowing a single father] I have seen a lot of movies with single mothers and their children. They're good, but there are not so many with capable single fathers. There seems to be this archetype that if you're a man and single, you're incapable of raising a child, which I think needs to be broken. If you find yourself in that position - like I have - it's important not to give up because of what people tell you.
- [on FaceOff] Without tooting my own horn - I think it's a masterpiece.
- I was being stalked by a mime - silent but maybe deadly. Somehow, this mime would appear on the set of set of Bringing Out the Dead and start doing strange things. I have no idea how it got past security. Finally, the producers took some action and I haven't seen the mime since. But it was definitely unsettling.
- (The hardest part was) trying to figure out how I was going to entertain you while playing a guy who was completely out of his mind on crack. At the same time, trying to be responsible so it didn't become an advertisement for doing drugs. The other thing is, I wasn't sure I could play the part totally sober, which I was. In "Leaving Las Vegas," I had a few drinks between scenes to get to a certain feeling, to get to a certain truth. But with this I was trying to look at it more impressionistically from a landscape of maybe 25 years ago to see what would come out of that filter of my imagination. -- on the toughest aspect of preparing for "Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call -- New Orleans"
- So many directors are so arrogant. For example, Klaus Kinsky -- who Werner Herzog has a legacy with -- he was very frustrated with the arrogance. We always hear Werner's side of the story about "Klaus was this and Klaus was that" but you never get to here Klaus' side of the story. I was doing a scene (on "Bad Lieutenant") -- it was in my second day of shooting -- and we all know the imagination and preparation (required) to think I was on cocaine (for the character). There was a little bottle of baby powder, and I'm snorting that. I'm psyching up, I'm psyching up, and he comes up and says (in German accent), "Now Nicolas, what is in that vial?" And I was like, "Are you kidding me? After four hours of this you're gonna actually ask me that? Take me out of my preparation? You would think the director would understand the actor's process and give us the space and the room to do what it is we need to do.
- I don't want to minimize the effort that goes into having a career, but now with the video age, let's face it, you can write your own stories and you can make your own movies and get it out. Or go on stage somewhere in a small venue off-off-off-Broadway.
- Usually it's very cathartic. The hard stuff is when you're not feeling great and you have to do a really happy scene. -- on the personal toll acting can take on a person
- James Dean in "East of Eden," the scene where he's trying to give Raymond Massey the money on his father's birthday. I was 14, I was at the New Beverly Cinema, and I said, "Oh, no, that is exactly how I feel. Oh my God, I have to do this." Nothing else ever affected me as strongly. -- on if there were any moments in his life when he realized he was going to be an actor
- {on the recession] People are losing their jobs because of what's going on in the economy, but I want to make movies that give families something to look forward to.
- (1996 quote) Jim Carrey and I went to George Hamilton's wine bar. He's an interesting one. He was there and had some fun stories. I told him how he was one of my heroes from the time he played Evel Knievel. We had cigars, and very expensive bottles of wine were opened, and Jim and I were going, "This is great, man." At the end of the night we got slapped with an $8,000 bill. It was at that point that George became the fox in the Pinocchio story. He happens to look quite a bit like that fox. I would not want to play cards with George Hamilton.
- (1996) I remember my prom was a complete disaster. I used bonds my grandmother had given me to rent a tuxedo and a limousine so I could go to the prom with this beautiful girl. And at the end of the night I went to kiss her and she responded. I was so nervous that my stomach got really nauseous and I said, "Excuse me" and just threw up on the street all over my shoes and my rented tux. The limo driver wouldn't let me in the car. He split and I had to walk home. That was my prom night.
- (1996, on if he wants to do theater work) No, I have stage fright. I don't like it. I've never gotten over it.
- (1996) I do not have a religion in my life, I wasn't raised that way. My father always believed that if I was going to have a religion I should discover it on my own and not have it crammed down my throat at a young age. I kind of wish I had some religion.
- (1996) If I thought about awards, I would not have been able to do a movie like Leaving Las Vegas, because the word around town was that Mike [Figgis] and I were making the most unreleasable movie in Hollywood. I had some fear that the movie would not get released.
- (1996, on his life) I know what I want to do, I'm doing it, but I'm still very much a student of the craft and I think I can go further. I still torment myself. I have a lot of self-doubt.

Nicolas Cage filmography

Name Year
The Croods 2012
Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance 2012
Trespass 2011
National Treasure 3 2011
Drive Angry 3D 2011
Janela Indiscreta 2010
The Hungry Rabbit Jumps 2010
Kick-Ass 2010
Season of the Witch 2010
With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story 2010
The Sorcerer's Apprentice 2010
The Rotten Tomatoes Show 2009
G-Force 2009
Knowing 2009
Mark at the Movies 2009
Lopez Tonight 2009
The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call - New Orleans 2009
Astro Boy 2009
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon 2009
The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien 2009
Samuel L. Jackson: An American Cinematheque Tribute 2008
NT2: Secrets of a Sequel 2008
NT2: Underground Action 2008
NT2: Set in History 2008
NT2: On Location 2008
NT2: Inside the Library of Congress 2008
NT2: Evolution of a Golden City 2008
NT2: Creating the London Chase 2008
NT2: Crafting the Presidents' Book 2008
Del corto a Hollywood 2008
Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired 2008
Oscar, que empiece el espectáculo 2008
Bangkok Dangerous 2008
Making the Best Next Thing 2007
Horâ wo 666 bai tanoshiku miru hô'hô 2007
Ghost Rider: Inside the Action 2007
Cannes, 60 ans d'histoires 2007
Ghost Rider 2007
Grindhouse 2007
The Light and the Dark: The Making of 'Face/Off' 2007
Next 2007
Cómo conseguir un papel en Hollywood 2007
National Treasure: Book of Secrets 2007
Up Close with Carrie Keagan 2007
Visual and Special Effects 2006
VH1 News Presents: Hollywood Secrets Revealed - Scenes They Don't Want You to See 2006
The Wicker Man 2006
The Making of 'Lord of War' 2006
Relative Humidity: The Characters 2006
The Curse of Superman 2006
Forecast: Becoming a Weatherman 2006
Extended Outlook: The Script 2006
The Making of 'World Trade Center' 2006
Too Tough to Die: A Tribute to Johnny Ramone 2006
Premio Donostia a Matt Dillon 2006
The Ant Bully 2006
Movie Rush 2006
World Trade Center 2006
San Sebastián 2006: Crónica de Carlos Boyero 2006
Ban the Sadist Videos! Part 2 2006
On Location in Tulsa: The Making of 'Rumble Fish' 2005
'National Treasure' on Location 2005
Lord of War 2005
Weekend Sunrise 2005
Cinema mil 2005
Tsunami Aid: A Concert of Hope 2005
The Weather Man 2005
Made in Hollywood 2005
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson 2005
Bully & Rick 2004
Love, Death, Elvis & Oz: The Making of 'Wild at Heart' 2004
John Travolta: The Inside Story 2004
National Treasure Uncovered 2004
Tricks of the Trade: Making 'Matchstick Men' 2004
The 76th Annual Academy Awards 2004
National Treasure 2004
Le grand journal de Canal+ 2004
101 Biggest Celebrity Oops 2004
Valley Girl: In Conversation - Nicolas Cage and Martha Coolidge 2003
Valley Girl: 20 Totally Tubular Years Later 2003
The Code Talkers: A Secret Code of Honor 2003
Love Chain 2003
Matchstick Men 2003
Celebrities Uncensored 2003
The 75th Annual Academy Awards 2003
Sunday Morning Shootout 2003
Jimmy Kimmel Live! 2003
Hollywood Salutes Nicolas Cage: An American Cinematheque Tribute 2002
Sonny 2002
The Cult: Music Without Fear 2002
Windtalkers 2002
2002 MTV Movie Awards 2002
Adaptation. 2002
HypaSpace 2002
Tinseltown TV 2002
Christmas Carol: The Movie 2001
2001 ABC World Stunt Awards 2001
Eigo de shabera-night 2001
Italian Soldiers 2001
Captain Corelli's Mandolin 2001
The 73rd Annual Academy Awards 2001
The Movie Loft 2001
The Family Man 2000
Twentieth Century Fox: The Blockbuster Years 2000
Gone in Sixty Seconds 2000
2000 Blockbuster Entertainment Awards 2000
2000 MTV Movie Awards 2000
8MM 1999
The 71st Annual Academy Awards 1999
Bringing Out the Dead 1999
The Directors 1999
VH-1 Where Are They Now? 1999
1998 Blockbuster Entertainment Awards 1998
Making Angels 1998
Snake Eyes 1998
Bravo Profiles: The Entertainment Business 1998
City of Angels 1998
Junket Whore 1998
City Confidential 1998
Welcome to Hollywood 1998
Face/Off 1997
Sean Connery, an Intimate Portrait 1997
Sean Connery Close Up 1997
Con Air 1997
The 69th Annual Academy Awards 1997
3rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards 1997
Wild On... 1997
Corazón de... 1997
The American Film Institute Salute to Clint Eastwood 1996
The Rock 1996
Mundo VIP 1996
The 68th Annual Academy Awards 1996
E! True Hollywood Story 1996
Magacine 1996
Leaving Las Vegas 1995
Kiss of Death 1995
Anyone for Pennis? 1995
It Could Happen to You 1994
A Century of Cinema 1994
The 66th Annual Academy Awards 1994
Trapped in Paradise 1994
Guarding Tess 1994
Inside the Actors Studio 1994
Howard Stern 1994
Deadfall 1993
Red Rock West 1993
Amos & Andrew 1993
Intimate Portrait 1993
GMTV 1993
Late Night with Conan O'Brien 1993
Late Show with David Letterman 1993
Making of... 1992
Honeymoon in Vegas 1992
Nyhetsmorgon 1992
HBO First Look 1992
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno 1992
Días de cine 1991
Zandalee 1991
The Charlie Rose Show 1991
Fire Birds 1990
Wild at Heart 1990
Jonathan Ross Presents for One Week Only: David Lynch 1990
Industrial Symphony No. 1: The Dream of the Brokenhearted 1990
Tempo di uccidere 1989
The Arsenio Hall Show 1989
Vampire's Kiss 1988
The 60th Annual Academy Awards 1988
Never on Tuesday 1988
Live with Regis and Kathie Lee 1988
Raising Arizona 1987
Moonstruck 1987
The 59th Annual Academy Awards 1987
Biography 1987
The Boy in Blue 1986
Peggy Sue Got Married 1986
The Cotton Club 1984
Racing with the Moon 1984
Birdy 1984
Rumble Fish 1983
Valley Girl 1983
Fast Times at Ridgemont High 1982
Wogan 1982
Best of Times 1981
Entertainment Tonight 1981
Wetten, dass..? 1981
Saturday Night Live 1975