There's a diagnostic level of insanity for celebrities that has yet to be recognized by the DSM-V commonly known as "Nicolas Cage-crazy." It's a special kind of mania genetically hardwired through nepotism, a love of Elvis Presley and further nurtured by an almost unlimited supply of funds. Basically, it is best described as when an actor suddenly believes himself to be a rock star without ever playing any music.
It's sometimes hard to remember that Cage was once a well-respected, Academy Award winning actor. His reputation has since been tarnished with roles seemingly taken only for a payday, paparazzi-friendly outbursts and outrageous, bankruptcy-causing purchases. Still, in between paycheck roles, Cage still puts in the occasional great performance in critical-darlings like Joe and Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans.
Of course, that doesn't make it any less difficult to ignore the more scintillating, avant-garde moments of pure, uncut Cage. He is, after all, a Coppola at heart, nephew of Francis Ford. For much of his life, like his uncle's tortured shoot of Apocalypse Now, he has gone big and not to one of his castles or mansions.
Presented now are just a fraction of the things Nic Cage has done, said or bought during episodes of his pseudonymous condition.
14 "Fighting" Vince Neil
The fight occurred after Neil allegedly assaulted a woman asking for an autograph. While no one is certain what exactly he's shouting, no explanation has been offered as to why Cage was demanding his ring - or rage? - back.
Cage himself was once charged with domestic abuse charges against his third wife Alice Kim - though those charges were dropped. So perhaps he's just trying to atone for dropkicking Leelee Sobieski or whatever the hell that was.
Because, as we soon will learn, he will always defend a woman's honour...
13 "I will die in the name of honor!"
When, or if, Nic Cage dies, it will be in the name of honor. After all, this is a man who survived working with tyrannical director Werner Herzog, so there's no doubt his finale wouldn't be grand.
This incident took place outside of a club in 2014 in Bucharest, Romania. While it's unclear just whose honour he would die for, this did occur around the same time he told Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance co-star Idris Elba he spent the night in Dracula's castle to "channel the energy."
12 An Expenditure 65 Million Years in the Making...
Cage outbid Leonardo DiCaprio for the skull of a Tyrannosaurus that reportedly sold for close to $300,000. The story gets stranger as only Nic Cage stories can when it was later discovered the skull was on the black market.
Not only does this sound like the best pitch for a National Treasure-esque script, it was one of many pieces of evidence offered in court during his lawsuit against former business manager Samuel Levin who, Cage asserted, sent him "down a path to financial ruin."
11 "...and there was a naked man wearing my leather jacket eating a Fudgesicle in front of my bed"
We've all been there. Went out the night before, had one too many pints of amber and terrifyingly awoke the next morning next to a stranger. However, this isn't a "I got drunk and woke up in Nicolas Cage's bed" anecdote.
Rather, Nicolas Cage woke up in his Orange County bedroom and, as if in some David Lynch-inspired hangover haze, found a stranger, naked save for the jacket, at the foot of his bed eating a Fudgesicle. Though the clearly disturbed man was convinced to leave, this is something that could only happen to Cage. To date, the makers of Fudgesicle have yet to comment.
Cage has made his worship and love for the King of Rock and Roll no secret. He based his entire performance in David Lynch's Wild at Heart on Presley, and other roles have also included references to the King. Hint to young screenwriters, if you're going to offer a script to Cage, pitch it as "Elvis-in-a..." and surely he'd acquiesce.
One can only assume that Cage learning many different forms of Karate was most likely inspired by the late rocker's own passion for the style. It's had what can only be called the worst kind of impact on his children, however. In 2011, his son Weston got into a vicious street fight with his personal trainer after trying to deliver an angry roundhouse kick.
9 The Tomb of Cage
It seems only fitting that the walking definition of megalomania would construct a monument unto himself. That's exactly what Cage did when he bought a plot in a New Orleans cemetery and had a 9-foot tall pyramid built over it. One can only hope that, long after his death in the name of honour, the tomb will lead to further hidden Cage treasures, including that one thing he bought that he won't tell us about.
8 Sucking the Life out of a Performance
During one of his insane spending sprees, Cage purchased a pet Octopus that he unfortunately had to part with after owing nearly six million dollars in back taxes. Cage claimed the pet was bought to help improve his acting, which sounds like a really creative excuse to the IRS.
7 Jumping the Shark
Among the other strange things Nicolas Cage decided he absolutely had to have, he bought a saltwater shark. Because why the hell not? Though Cage has filmed an as-yet-released film called Indianapolis: Men of Courage about the real-life incident made legendary by Robert Shaw in Jaws, so it's possible this can also be chalked up to "acting purposes."
6 Jumping the Crocodile
Is he going to be in a movie about crocodiles? He has to be, right? He's not just that crazy. But yes, among his own private zoo he called home, Cage had a crocodile. Is any of this sounding oddly familiar? No, it can't be that. Unless...
5 He Bought His Own Private Carribean Island
...Good God, it is! Between this, the scary animal farm and the black-market dinosaur, there is no longer any question that at one point, Nicolas Cage was either researching a role as a Bond villain or actively trying to become one. Given his career, either way would have ended in an attempt at real-life world domination.
I never thought I'd say this, but thank God for the IRS.
4 He Did Magic Mushrooms With His Cat
One would imagine a man afflicted with Nic Cage-crazy would have been exposed to a pharmacy's worth of psychotropic drugs in his day, though Cage has only spoken once about actually ingesting them. In an interview with David Letterman, Cage admitted to eating magic mushrooms and soon noticed his cat had managed to help itself to a few.
Given his predilection for exotic pets, we were thankfully spared headlines of "Crocodile Rampages Through California; Suddenly Realizes the Fact It Will Live Over 100" or "Shark Suddenly Ponders Why It Must Keep Swimming."
3 "I actually choose the way I eat according to the way animals have sex."
Speaking of treating animals like they're people, Nic Cage has discovered a particularly curious diet based in part on his out-of-whack morality and eccentric anthropomorphic ideas.
"I think fish are very dignified with sex," he told The Sun about the sea dwellers who discreetly lay eggs only to have a male come by and finish on them later. As a result, Cage only eats animals who screw proper. Pigs, he claims, have no dignity in sex. He only eats fish and fowl.
Still no answer on his thoughts on soul-consuming, but perhaps his personal, Nic Cage-brand of acting can shed some light on that.
2 "Nouveau Shamanic" Acting
Contrary to popular belief that Cage bases his roles on what bizarre thing the studio will allow him to do to his hair or whether or not he gets to play a knight ("I always wanted to play a knight"), he actually has a name for his particular style of performance.
In an interview with Movieline, he called the style "Nouveau Shamanic" and explained it in very broad terms. But don't worry, he also said he will one day write a book about it. From what we know about Cage, "Shamanic" is clearly a reference to shamans, who often communed with spirits while going into trance-like states. And "nouveau" is merely the pretentious, actor-y way of saying new.
1 "I do."
Never could there be a better, more perverse version of fandom than marrying the daughter of your idol. That's exactly what Nic Cage's Nic-Crazy led him to do in 2002 when he married Lisa Marie Presley. After 108 days, the couple separated, presumably due to Cage constantly asking for nerdy details of The King's private life. The divorce proceedings lasted longer than the actual marriage.