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Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Is Nicholas Cage Superhero Material?

A few years ago, he was supposed to be donning the red cape for Superman Lives, a movie that had even been promoted in theaters with cardboard displays, as I understand it. But, it was not to be. I've read differing accounts, among them, that Cage walked because of Tim Burton's constant griping over the script, and also that Cage considered it a timing issue - that his time to play the character had come and gone. Who knows, right?

Well, now he's on board for the leading role in the Marvel Comics movie, Ghost Rider, now in production. Portraying motorcycle stuntman Johnny Blaze, Cage's character gets tricked by Satan into becoming the "Spirit of Vengeance." For the uninitiated, that's a guy with a flaming skull, who rides around on an also-flaming motorcycle, and spends his time making the bad guys pee their pants and cry like babies. Basically. (Just you wait and see; there WILL be some of that in the movie.) Anyway, you can check out a short interview with Cage about the movie, here.

But, Nicholas Cage as a superhero? I just can't see it.

Look, I like Nic Cage as an actor, and I've enjoyed many of his movies. But, he just doesn't fit the superhero mold, in my mind. It's my opinion that his real strength is comedy. Yes, I'm sure there will be some comedic elements in Ghost Rider, and maybe even enough for him to breathe some life into the character. To me, however, Nic will always be the gangly ex-con, who always looks and sounds half-asleep, from Raising Arizona. But, hey, I was wrong about the success of the FF movie. Prove me wrong, again, Nicky!

By the way, Ghost Rider, as well as the new Superman movie, are both being filmed in Australia. How's THAT for irony?

Wrong-Headedness on FF Movie, and Batman Meets Dracula!

As intimated a few weeks ago, when I made a prediction on the FF movie, I am THRILLED to see that I'm being proven wrong. The movie isn't laying an egg, after all, and has even beat out War of The Worlds for the opening weekend. There's a great story on this at USA Today. Those interviewed for the story basically make the point that it is a fun comic book movie, rather than one that takes a look at the "dark" side of life, or humanity. This really kind of lines up with something Peter David said on his website, that comics fans wishing to enjoy the movie should expect something more "Lee and Kirby," (my words, not his) than anything. Well, you have to admit that the Lee/Kirby years were pretty much the most fun the FF have ever been. Now I REALLY want to see this movie!

This is an interesting tidbit; seems a new Batman animated movie will be out on dvd in October. Batman vs. Dracula: The Animated Movie, will be a part of the NEW Batman animated series, however, not the classic "retro/noir" series of the 90's. I'm a little disappointed in this, as I haven't been thrilled by the new series, but I'll probably pick it up, when it's on sale.