“Boy, did [superhero films] take over. I knew they would. I was about 10 or 11, and I had the prescience to know that once the technology got there, the comic-book movie would dominate the industry. And it has.”
Nicolas Cage, there, a veritable soothsayer of comic book-related culture predictions, and a man who managed to play one of Marvel’s weirder anti-heroes in Ghost Rider (twice!), even though he never quite realised his dream of playing Superman on the big screen.
In a new interview with Yahoo News, Cage has been reflecting on a big chunk of his career to date, and inevitably the actor’s stint as Johnny Blaze came up. He played the iconic stunt rider-turned-devil’s bounty hunter in both 2007’s Ghost Rider and 2011’s Ghost Rider: Spirit Of Vengeance, and he still has a lot of love for both films.
“The problem is, it’s very hard to take a family of children to a movie — and they made it a PG-13 movie — about a superhero who, oh, by the way, also happens to have sold his soul to Satan,” he told the site – and how easy is it to mentally picture him saying this, complete with hand gestures?! “So it’s not going to be the most commercial concept or vehicle. But it certainly is the most interesting, and the most thought-provoking. I think if you look back on the movies today, they age well.”
Cage does think there was an opportunity for Ghost Rider to be a trailblazer, however, and it’s one that was ultimately missed.
“Had Ghost Rider been made in R-rated format, the way they had the guts to do with Deadpool, and they did it again today, I’m fairly certain it would be enormously successful. Having said that, I still think the movies were a hit. People don’t look at the subsidiary outlets, like DVD and streaming and whatnot. When you look at what Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor did [on Ghost Rider: Spirit Of Vengeance] for $50 million, and they got a $250 million return, you begin to see the genius of the sequel.”
The whole interview is well worth a read, with Cage also describing Face/Off as a “cubist mindfuck” and chatting about the flak he took for choosing The Rock instead of a more ‘worthy’ film after his success with Leaving Las Vegas.
Cage’s critically acclaimed new film Mandy, from Beyond The Black Rainbow director Panos Cosmatos, is now playing. Read our review here.
Kirsten Howard is the news editor at Den Of Geek UK, and she will assure you that Tokyo Drift is the best one, even if you didn’t ask. You can follow her on Twitter, but we wouldn’t recommend it.