Nicolas Cage Declares He Is Officially ‘Goth’ After Prepping to Play Dracula

The "Vampire's Kiss" star takes on iconic bloodsucker Dracula in upcoming horror-comedy "Renfield," opposite Awkwafina and Nicholas Hoult.
Nicolas Cage, 2021 Gotham Awards, Cipriani
Nicolas Cage
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

After admittedly being “marginalized by the studio system” following a “few flops,” Nicolas Cage is ready for his second (third? fourth?) act.

The iconic star — don’t call Cage an “actor” — has been preparing to play an equally influential figure: Dracula. Cage stars in Chris McKay’s “Renfield,” about the vampire’s servant and henchman in an insane asylum. And yes, it’s a horror-comedy co-starring Nicholas Hoult, Awkwafina, Adrian Martinez, and Ben Schwartz. “Rick and Morty” screenwriter Ryan Ridley penned the script, reportedly set in the present day.

“A word I don’t like anymore, ‘acting,'” Cage told the Los Angeles Times. “I sound like a pretentious fart for saying ‘thespian’ but acting now has become like lying. It sounds like I’m lying. If you’re a great actor, you’re a great liar. ‘Thespian’ seems more like it’s about finding some truth within and then projecting it for others to get it. At least, it does to me.”

And Cage has taken some of that truth and applied it to his real life, including parenting a pet crow named Hoogan.

“Crows are very intelligent. And I like their appearance, the Edgar Allan Poe aspect,” Cage said. “I like the goth element. I am a goth.”

Cage found inspiration from other horror flicks when channeling Dracula, namely James Wan’s “Malignant,” which landed on HBO Max last year.

“James Wan and the actress [Annabelle Wallis] created this choreography that was terrifying,” the “Mandy” scene-stealer explained, citing that the “key is movement” to being truly terrifying. “So I’m hoping to do something like that where Dracula can either glide or move like Sadako in ‘Ringu.'”

The “Vampire’s Kiss” star previously called his awards-worthy turn in “Pig” a take on “western Kabuki — what could be done with film performance in terms of the abstract and operatic and breaking form” in an exclusive interview with IndieWire’s Anne Thompson.

Cage also plays a “highly-neurotic, anxiety-ridden version” of himself in Tom Gormican’s “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent,” in theaters April 22.

To do what I do in cinema has been like a guardian angel for me, and I need it,” Cage described to Entertainment Weekly, vowing to never retire. “I’m healthier when I’m working, I need a positive place to express my life experience, and filmmaking has given me that. So I’m never going to retire. Where are we now, 117 movies?” 

Daily Headlines
Daily Headlines covering Film, TV and more.

By subscribing, I agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

PMC Logo
IndieWire is a part of Penske Media Corporation. © 2023 IndieWire Media, LLC. All Rights Reserved.