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(Credit: Nicolas Genin)

Nicolas Cage: "I’ve left the small town that is Hollywood"

He may have served his time in a good handful of typically terrible films, but veteran actor Nicolas Cage remains a titan of the industry and an excellent actor in his own right. 

His latest film, Michael Sarnoski’s Pig, explores the life of a truffle hunter living in the Oregonian wilderness who must face up to his violent past when his beloved pig is kidnapped. It’s a narrative that screams ‘of course Nicolas Cage is in it’, with the actor now preferring smaller independent projects over big-budget industry adventures. “I do feel that I’ve gone into my own wilderness and that I’ve left the small town that is Hollywood,” the actor states in an interview with Variety.

Elaborating on his relationship with Hollywood, Cage comments: “I don’t know if I’d want to go back. I don’t know if I’d want to go and make another Disney movie. It would be terrifying. It’s a whole different climate. There’s a lot of fear there”. 

There was a time when Cage was a big box-office draw akin to the likes of Tom Cruise or Dwayne Johnson, appearing in Jerry Bruckheimer action flicks The Rock and Con Air to high commercial success, though he recalls his time on these films with difficulty. “When I was making Jerry Bruckheimer movies back-to-back, that was just a high pressure game. There were a lot of fun moments, but at the same time, there was also ‘We wrote this line. It has to be said this way,’” the actor states. 

“On independent movies, you have more freedom to experiment and be fluid. There’s less pressure and there’s more oxygen in the room,” Cage continues, with this certainly being revealed in recent performances in whacky horror Mandy, and Lovecraftian sci-fi Color Out of Space. 

His latest film, Pig, shows a further opportunity for the actor to embrace a quieter, more controlled role, with himself noting, “I wanted to remind myself and also remind some folks perhaps in the audience or in the media that I could also apply myself to a much more quiet and measured performance style”.

Continuing, the actor adds: “I just wanted to show up on set, walk into a room and carry whatever my life experiences, whatever my memories were, whatever my bad dreams last night were, and just tell the story”.

Pig is released on July 16th in the USA and on August 20th in the UK, though don’t expect Nicolas Cage to watch the film, commenting, “I will never see this movie…It’s too much for me to go to the premiere and sit there with everybody. Psychologically, that’s too bizarre and whacked out for me”.

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