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Nicolas Cage Goes Full ‘Tiger King’ as Joe Exotic in Scripted Television Series

The role marks the first television show of Cage's career.

Nicolas Cage and "Tiger King"

Nicolas Cage and “Tiger King”

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Tiger King” is becoming a television show with Nicolas Cage confirmed to star as Joe Schreibvogel, better known across the world as Joe Exotic. According to Variety, the television show will be based on the Leif Reigstad’s Texas Monthly article “Joe Exotic: A Dark Journey Into the World of a Man Gone Wild,” the rights of which were bought by “American Vandal” showrunner Dan Lagana in June 2019. Lagana will write and serve as showrunner of the Nicolas Cage-starring Joe Exotic series. The eight-episode series is being produced by Imagine Television Studios and CBS Television Studios.

Per Variety: “The story centers around Joe Schreibvogel, a.k.a Joe Exotic, an eccentric, exotic zookeeper in Oklahoma who fights to keep his park even at the risk of losing his sanity. The series will live in the lion’s den with Joe, explore how he became Joe Exotic, and how he lost himself to a character of his own creation.”

Joe Exotic was a breakout star of Netflix’s blockbuster documentary series “Tiger King,” which became a worldwide sensation after its March 20 debut on the streaming platform. The series tracked the rivalry between big cat owners Joe Exotic and Carole Baskin. Joe Exotic is currently serving a prison sentence for conspiring to murder Baskin. The subject also alleges Baskin murdered her husband by feeding him to her big cats. Joe Exotic’s popularity from “Tiger King” has been the source of controversy, as several wildlife experts have criticized the show for glossing over Joe Exotic’s mistreatment and malnourishment of big cats.

The Joe Exotic series gives Nicolas Cage the first headlining television series of his career. The actor now has several upcoming projects announced, including the feature film “The Unbearable Weight Of Massive Talent.” The meta drama from writer-director Tom Gormican casts Cage as two fictionalized versions of himself. Cage’s Joe Exotic series is the second scripted series in development featuring characters popularized by Netflix’s “Tiger King” documentary series. It was announced last year that “Saturday Night Live” favorite Kate McKinnon would be starring as Carole Baskin in a series based on the Wondery podcast “Joe Exotic.”

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