Why Nicolas Cage Doesn’t Like Being Called An ‘Actor’

“For me it always implies, ‘Oh, he’s a great actor, therefore he’s a great liar,’” Cage told Variety’s “Awards Circuit” podcast in an episode that aired this week. “With the risk of sounding like a pretentious a-hole, I like the word ‘thespian,’ because to me, ‘thespian’ means you’re going into your heart, or you’re going into your imagination, or your memories, or your dreams, and you’re bringing something back to communicate with the audience.”

The “Raising Arizona” actor thespian also shared that some of his wilder performances (we’re looking at you, “Vampire’s Kiss”) have been the result of his exploring different acting styles the same way a visual artist might experiment with different painting styles.

“It was my aunt Talia Shire who first said to me ‘Naturalism is a style,’” Cage said. “And I was also a big believer in arts synchronicity, and that what you could do with one art form you could do in another. Meaning, you know, in painting, for example, you can get abstract, you can get photorealistic, you can get impressionistic. Why not try that with film performance?”

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