Nicolas Cage never received any money for Oscar-winning role

Dominic Smithers

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Nicolas Cage never received any money for Oscar-winning role

Featured Image Credit: Cinematic Collection/Everett Collection Inc/Alamy Stock Photo

In recent years, Nicolas Cage has become something of a cult figure.

The bizarre characters he creates in some of the strangest movies around are something to behold.

You only have to look back at 1997's hit blockbuster Face/Off or his most recent release The Unbearable Weight Of Massive Talent, which saw him play a warped version of himself, to get an idea of what I mean.

But while Cage's army of fans love his off-the-wall approach, it was his 1995 film Leaving Las Vegas that revitalised his career and actually saw him nominated for an Oscar.

The hit movie, which was based on a cult novel by John O’Brien, was directed by Mike Figgis, and saw Cage play Ben Sanderson.

Nicolas Cage won an Oscar for Leaving Las Vegas. Credit: Lumiere Pictures
Nicolas Cage won an Oscar for Leaving Las Vegas. Credit: Lumiere Pictures

Down on his luck, the screenwriter heads to Las Vegas, planning to use all of his severance package from the job he has just been fired from to drink himself into oblivion.

But his plan takes a turn when he meets sex worker Sera (Elizabeth Shue).

The film was met with critical acclaim, and Cage won an Oscar for his performance.

But while it did wonders for his career, Cage never received the $100,000 he was promised to star in the film. And speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Figgis said he neither did he.

"They said the film never went into profit," he said, referring to production company Lumiere Pictures.

This is despite the film being made for $4 million and reportedly taking in $32 million worldwide.

Cage lost out on $100,000 for Leaving Las Vegas. Credit: Everett Collection Inc/Alamy Stock Photo
Cage lost out on $100,000 for Leaving Las Vegas. Credit: Everett Collection Inc/Alamy Stock Photo

Figgis added: "Whatever. I mean, my career then took off again, and the next film I did, I got really well paid.

"And within a year [Nic] was earning $20 million a film, so that was quite good."

So I guess they both did pretty well out of it, even if they were short-changed a little.

The film set Cage on a course to star in some of the most memorable films of the past 20 years, including USS Indianapolis: Men Of Courage, which told the story of one of the most gruesome shark attacks ever.

The 2016 film is based on the story of the USS Indianapolis, the US Navy heavy cruiser that was torpedoed while on a secret mission.

You may remember the USS Indianapolis as having been mentioned in Robert Shaw's iconic speech in Jaws.

If you've seen neither if those films, I suggest you sort that out now.

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected] 

Topics: Film & TV, Nicolas Cage, US News, Film and TV, Entertainment

Dominic Smithers
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