Nicolas Cage Kills Any Hope For Return To Fan-Favorite Franchise

Nicolas Cage has shut down any hope of him returning to one of his most beloved franchises, and has words for some others.

By Nathan Kamal | Published

This article is more than 2 years old

Nicolas Cage

As an actor/thespian/cultural figure, Nicolas Cage is a national treasure. That is why it might be that much more disappointing that he seems to be slamming the door shut on any possibility of returning to the National Treasure franchise. Although the family-friendly Disney adventure series might not be the most critically acclaimed of Cage’s body of work, it was a tremendously fun romp through a conspiracy-tinged version of American history. And of course, we got this wonderful moment to carry us through the years. In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the star of Wild at Heart and Willy’s Wonderland pretty definitively shut down the idea of a National Treasure 3. Cage said: 

I have not heard hide nor hair about it. So often these things we read about are just conjecture without any base or foundation to it. I feel the same about National Treasure 3. It’s been 14 years. There’s no there, there.

While sad to hear, it makes sense. Despite his well-deserved reputation as one of Hollywood’s all-time weirdos, Nicolas Cage had a run of films produced by Disney in the early 2000s. Beginning with the first National Treasure movie (which was compared to contemporaneous The Da Vinci Code, but fun) and the second, both of which were financial successes, it seemed like it might be a successful meeting of icons. The animated hamster/spy movie G-Force made less of an impact in pop culture. But it was The Sorcerer’s Apprentice in 2010, a notable flop, that finished their relationship and also seemed to shut down the studio’s desire to make adventure movies. Around that time, the MCU also really hit its stride, and they devoted their resources towards superhero movies. Following the acquisition of LucasFilm in 2012, Star Wars became another big priority and standalone franchises like National Treasure were left hanging. 

nicolas cage

So that’s one explanation for why Nicolas Cage is not coming back to the role of Benjamin Franklin Gates. He also recently disappointed yet more fans by being pretty vague about the possibility of a Face/Off sequel, insisting that Hong Kong film legend John Woo would need to be involved. Considering that Woo has not made a movie in the Hollywood studio system since the aptly titled 2003 Ben Affleck science fiction film Paycheck, it seems unlikely that he could be persuaded to return. But at least he is not quite as definitive on that as he is National Treasure

While Nicolas Cage seems to have no interest in stealing any notable American Revolution documents in the near future, Disney is actually reviving the property without him. A National Treasure show will be premiering on their streaming platform Disney+, with a new cast of younger treasure hunters and a villainous Catherine Zeta-Jones. And it is not like Cage is abandoning or disavowing his past. In fact, his upcoming movie The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent is pretty explicitly Nicolas Cage playing “Nicolas Cage” and confronting all the weird memorabilia of the past while seemingly having a pretty good time palling around with Pedro Pascal. He has also received some of the highest critical praise for his recent film Pig, and will be finally playing Count Dracula in the upcoming film Renfield. So, we have plenty of Nicolas Cage coming.