Nicolas Cage at SXSW: ‘It Sucks to Be Famous Right Now’

Nicolas Cage SXSW: 'It Sucks Be

Nicolas Cage has a lot on his mind, and he wasn’t afraid to share his thoughts at a talk at SXSW Monday, moderated by his “Joe” writer-director David Gordon Green.

During the hour-long session, Cage talked about how his desire to become an actor stemmed from watching James Dean in “East of Eden” and “Rebel Without a Cause.” He then proceeded to discuss eloquently how film criticism has deteriorated and why it “sucks to be famous” nowadays.

Here are his quotes in full from the interactive festival:

“I started acting because I wanted to be James Dean. I saw him in “Rebel Without a Cause,” “East of Eden.” Nothing affected me — no rock song, no classical music — the way Dean affected in “Eden.” It blew my mind. I was like, “That’s what I want to do.” This was before everyone had a thing called a Smartphone, and before the advent of the “celebutard” — just being famous for famous’ sake. I’m not complaining, but it really sucks to be famous right now.”

“Now even the art of film criticism… now in the LA Times, the critic who reviewed “Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans,” incorporated how many homes I bought or sold into the review. What the hell does Lindsay Lohan’s personal life have to do with her performance in “The Canyons”? It should always be about the work itself. What difference does it make if Bill Clinton had an affair — how does that affect his performance as President?

“In my opinion, I don’t want to see personal aspects of someone’s life eclipse the work itself,” Cage said.

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  1. chris says:

    O please……..No one ever told you not to pay your taxes. No one ever told you to split out of the elvis presley glory hole. No one told you to take every stupid role that was out there, no one told you to buy 10 3 million dollar houses, save it.

  2. I totally agree with Nicolas Cage. Just because someone is famous, does not mean their personal life has to be an open book. My biggest wish in the world is to one day meet him!

  3. Gerry says:

    I have read a lot about actors personal lives on websites like imdb and magazines. I agree with Cage that the less i knowledge of their real life i know about, the more enjoyable and effective movies are. Actors ive never heard of or read about before come of convincing easy that the first time i see them i view their actual personality to be that of the character.

  4. oceansofcake says:

    How would Nick know what it’s like to be famous right now? He has been off the radar for years.

  5. I become absolutely irritated when I read an article that is demeaning of the actor, and has nothing to do with the movie. I hate it even more when the writer thinks they’re being clever just because they use a thesaurus to make them seem so gnostic. ;)

  6. Stephen S. says:

    Even Roger Ebert shamefully referenced a celebrity in his Chasing Liberty review. He tries to defend bringing in Britney Spears and Jason Alexander (not the Seinfeld guy, different person) in his review but he doesn’t convince me. It’s the worst review of Ebert’s career precisely for the Britney reference although there have been other reviews of his that I haven’t liked. I am an Ebert fan. I do believe him to be the greatest critic ever, but he is a human being. He’s not perfect and his Chasing Liberty is one example of a bad review from him.

  7. Ken says:

    We miss the likes of Pauline Kael even more.

  8. Shawn Gordon says:

    I couldn’t agree with Nic Cage more on the subject of how film criticism has deteriorated. It’s sad, Roger Ebert we miss you.

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