Nicolas Cage Needs To Do One Thing To Return To His Best Franchise

Will he return?

By Michileen Martin | Published

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Nicolas Cage may yet be bound for National Treasure 3. Ever since the announcement that the upcoming Disney+ series National Treasure: Edge of History would be going forward without the involvement of the leading man who started it all, the assumption has been that Cage and the Disney franchise were no longer on speaking terms. However, over the past couple of months there has been word that Cage could still have a sequel on the way or perhaps a part in the series, and now producer Jerry Bruckheimer says Cage pretty much has to do just one thing to make the sequel happen: give the script a thumbs up.

Speaking to ComicBook.com, the blockbuster producer Bruckheimer was asked whether or not Nicolas Cage could be back for National Treasure 3. Perhaps we’re all so used to the big Marvel secrecies, bit it feels kind of shocking that the producer confirmed it. “Let’s hope, we’re working on the script right now,” Bruckheimer told the site. “Hopefully [Cage] likes it, but it’s really good. So I think we’ll get it to him shortly.”

While the Nicolas Cage led treasure hunting films were never critics’ darlings, it’s genuinely confusing that it’s taken this long for things to get rolling on National Treasure 3. The last time we saw Cage as Benjamin Franklin Gates was in 2007’s National Treasure: Book of Secrets and the sequel landed a much bigger payday than the original. Taking in a worldwide gross of $459.2 million, the second film made over $100 million more than the original, while costing only $30 million more to make. Usually when you hear about popular film franchises falling by the wayside, it’s because the sequels yielded diminishing returns. Clearly other factors were involved when it comes to National Treasure.

nicolas cage national treasure
Nicolas Cage in National Treasure (2004)

Nicolas Cage could wind up passing on National Treasure 3 regardless of what he thinks of the script. Last July, the actor told Variety he had a lot of concerns about the notion of making another big studio blockbuster. “I don’t know if I’d want to go and make another Disney movie,” Cage said. “It would be terrifying. It’s a whole different climate. There’s a lot of fear there.”

Just going through the Con-Air star’s filmography shows he isn’t exactly the type to chase down big franchise parts. There was the ultimately aborted Superman Lives film; but other than that, Ghost Rider, and National Treasure, he doesn’t seem to chase after the kind of leading roles that would necessarily lead to repeat business. If Nicolas Cage does make National Treasure 3, it will be an outlier and probably one fans would love to see.

Even if Nicolas Cage passes on National Treasure 3, the makers of the new spinoff series have said they want him back for the show. Cormac and Marianne Wibberley–who wrote the first and second film as well as the pilot episode for the series–recently expressed their willingness to “beg and plead and whatever” in order to get Cage back in the role of Benjamin Franklin Gates for the show.