Nicolas Cage is known for his eclectic career choices. And he recently appeared in a film that his fans didn’t expect to see him in. But if you blink, you’ll miss him.
Despite film critics and movie-goers not being big fans of this summer’s The Flash, Nicolas Cage actually found his brief appearance in the DC Studios flick to be quite satisfying.
For fans who might have been confused about why the actor showed up in the film, the background is that Cage, 59, was supposed to portray Superman in 1998’s Superman Lives. However, Warner Bros. pulled the plug just weeks before filming began. So this is the first time that fans have seen him in the role.
While the Cage’s appearance is quick, he confesses that he was thrilled to finally have the chance to bring the character to life.
“Well, I was glad I didn’t blink,” Cage told USA Today. “For me, it was the feeling of being actualized. Even that look for that particular character, finally seeing it on screen, was satisfying. But as I said, it’s quick.
In the cameo, we see Cage appearing as Superman while fighting a giant spider during a scene where Ezra Miller, as Barry Allen, opens the multiverse to see different universes. The clip also featured Christopher Reeve and George Reeves as the Man of Steel, Helen Slater as Supergirl, and Adam West’s Batman.
Nicolas Cage as Superman
What approach would Nicolas Cage have taken to Superman, had Superman Lives been made? The Renfield actor points to his performance in the 1998 flick, City of Angels.
“I was supposed [to play] Clark Kent after that. And I was already developing this alien otherness playing this angel,” Cage explains.
“That is a perfect example of the tonality you would’ve gotten for Kal-El and for Clark Kent. Clark would’ve been a little more amusing. But Kal-El [had] the sensitivity and the goodness and the vulnerability and all those feelings that were kind of angelic and also terrifying,” he adds.
Last month, filmmaker Kevin Smith, who wrote several draft screenplays for Superman Lives admitted it had been “mind-melting” seeing Cage’s cameo in The Flash.
“I finally got to see Nic Cage be Superman. It has been an absolute delight for me,” he said to Rolling Stone magazine.
“It’s mind-melting,” he adds.
What Happened to Nicolas Cage’s Superman Lives
Tim Burton, following the launch of his Batman movie franchise, had shifted his focus to Superman. He began working on the film in 1998 with the script that had been penned by Kevin Smith. The script followed Superman’s epic battle against Doomsday.
After investing more than $30 million into casting and pre-production, Warner Brothers pulled the plug on the project, citing irreconcilable creative disparities as the reason. One of the biggest creative issues with the production was that producer John Peters was insisting on a scene in which Superman would fight a giant spider.
Smith was forced to include the scene in the script as one of three mandate requests that Peters had. Other requests included Peters not wanting Superman to fly in the film. And he wanted him to wear a black suit as well.
“One of the first things I thought when I saw it at the premiere is, ‘Goddammit, [the giant spider] would have worked.’ As much as I used to make fun of Jon Peters, that looked badass.” Smith confesses.
Additionally, Smith notes that he thinks Warner Brothers should consider giving Nic Cage a Superman movie.
“There’s a multiverse, man. Let’s give Nic Cage a Superman movie,'” he says. “You don’t have to be the only Superman. But why not? We’ve got multiple Batmans. I mean, shit, it would be one of the most interesting Superman flicks ever made. With all due respect to James Gunn and ‘Superman Legacy.’ Like, you’re talking about one of the greatest American actors alive. I still would back that play 100 percent.”