Actor Nicolas Cage is well aware of all the online memes about him, and an in a new interview with IndieWire it sounds like the actor isn’t too happy with it.
Countless gifs have been made of Cage’s work in the past, usually with his characters at their most manic and wild-eyed. It has become so ubiquitous though that Cage says he’s concerned the memes are overshadowing his more acclaimed work such as the recent “Mandy”:
“Its been branded ‘Cage Rage’ and it’s frustrating. I’m sure it’s frustrating for Panos [Cosmatos, ‘Mandy’ director], who has made what I consider a very lyrical, internal, and poetic work of art, to have this ‘Cage Rage’ thing slammed all over his movie. It’s one thing for me, because I’d like to think I could continue to work with Panos, but the internet has kind of done the movie a disservice.”
Cage goes on to say his performances aren’t method or naturalistic acting, rather they’re inspired by classic performances from old Hollywood not to mention some more abstract art forms – and that has informed his selection of projects:
“I had made a decision a long time ago that I wasn’t only going to explore naturalistic acting. I would do that sometimes – like I did in ‘Joe’ – but I also wanted to look at some of my other inspirations. I believed in art synchronicity, that what you can do in one art form, you can do in another.
So if I wanted to be abstract, like imitating Edvard Munch’s ‘The Scream,’ as I did in ‘Ghost Rider,’ I could do that. If I wanted to be more operatic or Western kabuki, I could do it. And I’m not the first.
Look at James Cagney in ‘White Heat,’ when he says ‘Top of the world, ma!’ Was that realistic? Hell no. Was it exciting and truthful? Hell yeah. Or Richard Burton in ‘Night of the Iguana,’ or Bruce Lee in ‘Enter the Dragon.’ The list goes on and on about these old troubadours who embraced a kind of charismatic and larger-than-size stylization. A grandeur, if you will.
I have to be honest. I did make certain choices to realize my abstract and more ontological fantasies with film performance, by playing people who were crazy, or by playing people who were on drugs, or supernaturally possessed – so that I have the license, if you will, to explore the German Expressionistic style of acting, or the Western kabuki. Whatever you want to call it.”
The comments come as “Mandy,” which holds a 93% on Rotten Tomatoes, hit VOD last week.