Nicholas Cage Teaches ‘The Sorcerer’s Apprentice’
Nicholas Cage is an incredibly gifted actor who continues to display his passion for genre works by appearing countless adventure films. This past summer he was the mentor in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice and is next seen in January’s Season of the Witch. In this interview, courtesy of Walt Disney Home Entertainment, Cage talks about last summer’s film, coming out on DVD Tuesday.
Question: How did you get involved with The Sorcerer’s Apprentice?
Nicholas Cage: The Sorcerer’s Apprentice began with my desire to play a magician in a movie. I played a magician of sorts in a movie called Next, which is when I became fascinated with ancient mythologies and philosophies from England. I loved the subject, so I had a conversation with Todd Garner – the producer of Next – and I said to him, “Boy, I’d really like to play a sorcerer from the times of King Arthur.” The very next day he said to me, “Nic, I’ve got it. Why don’t we create a movie around the sorcerer’s apprentice from the Fantasia movie?” It was perfect.
Question: How important was it to transform your look for your role in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice?
Nicholas Cage: Actors often change their looks for roles and I’m certainly part of that school of thought. In fact, I want to transform myself every time I get a new role. I’ll wear wigs, I’ll wear nosepieces, I’ll wear green contact lenses… I’ll do whatever I need to do to create a character. That’s what acting’s all about. That’s the fun of it.
Question: How would you describe the look of your character, Balthazar Blake?
Nicholas Cage: Jerry Bruckheimer says that Balthazar has the
look of an ancient rock star, and I have to agree with him. He has a
cool style that harkens back to the 500s or the 600s, which is where he
came from. Merlin was his teacher, so it was appropriate.
Question: Do you know any magical secrets?
Nicholas Cage: Let me tell you something: Never give away your
magical secrets. I worked on a movie in New Orleans where I used The
Rising Deck Of Cards trick on a friend of mine. He kept asking me, “How
are you doing that?” And I could tell he was getting a little nervous
because he thought something weird was going on. That’s when I made the
world’s worst mistake: I gave away the secret of my trick. He just threw
the cards away after that and I lost all the power. Never give away
Question: When was the last time you were an apprentice?
Nicholas Cage: The last time I was an apprentice was on a movie called Season of the Witch.
I had to learn how to ride horses for that movie and a young woman
named Camilla was my instructor. She did a wonderful job. I’d not been
on a horse before, so I was a little nervous – but I learned to love it,
which was exciting. I definitely felt like an apprentice there.
Question: What do you think is magical in our world today?
Nicholas Cage: Any painting is a work of magic. Any book is a
work of magic. Any science experiment is a work of magic. Any speech
that moves people is a work of magic. When you think about magic, it’s
not all hocus-pocus. It’s all about imagination and will power and
Question: Do you remember the first time you realized you wanted to act?
Nicholas Cage: I knew I wanted to be an actor when I was about
six years old. I was trying to figure out how to get inside the
television set because I was fascinated by it. My father built a little
castle out of plywood in our back yard and I would go in there for hours
making up stories and characters.
Question: What characters did you make up?
Nicholas Cage: I would pretend to be anything from a knight to a superhero to an astronaut. In fact, that castle was where I learned to act.
Question: Do you have any advice for youngsters who want to follow in your footsteps and act?
Nicholas Cage: Keep the child in you alive because it’s your
imagination that will connect you to audiences. Your imagination is your
best tool to be an actor. Don’t let people try to diminish it or make
you feel bad for having an imagination. Use it whenever you can. I would
urge children to play as much as they can and use their imagination as
much as possible. It will really help you as an actor. Follow your
instincts, work hard and you’ll go far.