This is one of those instances in which a technically meaningless comment from a celebrity sets the internet’s imagination ablaze.
During a recent chat with Joblo, Nicolas Cage — the best-worst actor in the history of cinema — was asked if there were any prominent superhero movie roles that he wishes he could tackle.
“I mean, I think my comic book days are kind of…I’m on to other things,” said the onetime Ghost Rider and almost Superman. “But I always thought I’d make a great Joker.”
After that, Cage spent some time musing about the prospect of playing Victor Von Doom, until the interviewer pressed him a bit more about The Clown Prince of Crime.
To which Cage replied, “It would be the perfect one for me to go even more off the rails than I’ve ever done before and, y’know, it’d be fun.”
It’s important to note that Warner Bros. has multiple Joker-related movies in the works; one or more with Jared Leto back in the white face paint, and other where Joaquin Phoenix probably already has the gig locked down. So the odds that we’ll ever actually see Cage terrorizing Gotham City and taunting Batman in a major film are slim to zero. But given the actor’s penchant for balls-out bonkers scenery chewing, it’s super fun to think about!
I dunno if I’d ever call Cage a versatile actor, but The Joker is nothing if not a versatile character. After all, Cesar Romero’s jovial gangster, Heath Ledger’s megalomaniacal anarchist, and Mark Hamill’s smirking one-liner machine are all wildly different, while equally “accurate” iterations of The Harlequin of Hate.
Maybe if Warners ever makes the big screen version of Grant Morrison’s Arkham Asylum I keep telling them they should, Cage wouldn’t be a bad fit for The Joker part. He wouldn’t get the play the main villain per se, but he would get to hang out and yell crazy shit throughout the film. Also, when a fellow inmate suggests unmasking a captive Batman in order to see his “real face” early in the story, Cage would get to deliver the definitive Joker line, “Oh, for Christ’s sake, don’t be so predictable. That is his real face!”
As far a memorable movie dialogue goes, that’d sure beat “Not The Bees!”
middle image from Sean Murphy’s Batman: White Knight