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Prepare the memes: Nicolas Cage will soon be playing a "heightened" version of himself

Photo: Visual China Group (Getty Images), Peter Sabok (Getty Images)

Nicolas Cage has played a lot of top-tier weirdos over the course of his career, from amoral executives who think they’re vampires, to cops who think they’re not gonna get the bees, to any number of Ghost Riders, Ant Bullys, and Croods. And yet, on reflection, relatively few of those characters have been any weirder than Nicolas Cage himself, a man who has owned a castle, a pyramid, and a dinosaur skull at various points in his life, and who named one of his kids Kal-El, because honoring personal hero Superman with a simple “Clark” would have been an insufficiently Nic Cage-ish thing to do.

Which is why it’s very exciting to learn, courtesy of Variety, that Cage may soon be playing the ultimate weirdo: Himself. Lionsgate is reportedly in final talks to go into development on Cage’s movie The Unbearable Weight Of Massive Talent, which is being directed by Tom Gormican, from a script he co-wrote with Kevin Etten. And if those names are familiar to you, congratulations: You’re one of the nine or so people who watched their Fox comedy Ghosted, a single-season-long argument against the idea that it’s enough just to have incredibly interesting performers on board a project in order to make it work.

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Still, though: Cage as Cage! Unberable will star the actor as a “heightened” version of himself—a terrifying concept right from the jump—who accepts a million dollars to attend a superfan’s birthday party, and is then forced to invoke several of his iconic characters to get out of a dangerous situation. Really, the potential here is almost endless: Who would dare tangle with Cameron Poe? What enemy wouldn’t run from the presence of a guy willing to cut his own face off? And what bad guy would be cold enough to shoot a man already two-thirds of the way toward drinking himself to death in a Las Vegas hotel room? Truly, the powers at Cage’s disposal here will be legendary. And for all the Nicolas Cage of him, Cage does seem to have a baseline self-awareness of the ridiculousness of his public persona; seeing him interact directly with his meme-fraught legacy sounds like it’ll make for fascinating entry in the weirdly packed “aging action stars play meta version of themselves” genre.

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