Actor Nicolas Cage “loved” playing an older character in The Retirement Plan, according to the film’s director.
In Tim Brown’s new film, Cage plays a retired assassin. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Brown said he got Cage on board for the film after the actor liked the idea of playing someone older.
Brown told the publication: “I sent Mike [Nilon], his manager, the script, and he responded. He said that he thought it was really funny. He loved the family theme that’s running through it.
“He loved the idea of playing a grandfather and playing a bit older than his own age. So he liked the idea of being aged up, and that was pretty much it.
“We talked a lot about the material, and the comedy really drew him to it.”
Brown went on to praise Cage for his “phenomenal” ability as a comic actor and for his improvisational work on he film.
He continued: “I don’t know if he ever gets enough credit for being a tremendous comic actor because he does so much drama and action, but his comic ability is phenomenal. He has an ability to improvise and add just a little twist of something that I refer to as the ‘Nic Cage spice’.
“It’s hard to explain, but you love it. So he brought his Nic Cage-ism to this role in the Caymans with us, as he does in every role that he does, and I got really lucky that he liked the material.
“I always found that Nic is great out of the gate and he finds more improvisation and looseness in the more takes that he does…I think it’d be the day that we were shooting the balcony scene, and his daughter [Ashley Greene] says, ‘Are you some kind of assassin or something?’ And I had written a line for that moment, but Nic turned to me and said, ‘What if I didn’t say anything and just looked at her and [sheepishly laughed]?’
“It was something that only he can do, and to this day, it’s the highlight of the film for me, because it shows how great he is at doing nothing except a little expression. It just added so much to it. So that would probably be my most memorable day.”
Earlier this year, Cage expressed interest in starring in a musical following roles in comedy films The Unbearable Weight Of Massive Talent and Renfield.
“Right now, I’m excited that the comedy is back on the menu,” Cage told Rolling Stone. “It hasn’t been there for, gosh, 15 years. That’s nice that I may have the opportunity to do more comedy. But I’ve never done a musical. That would be something that I would be curious about.”
In a four-star review of Renfield, NME wrote: “Renfield isn’t for the faint of heart, but if you’ve got a reasonably strong stomach and an appreciation for the tongue-in-cheek, it really is bloody good fun.”
Cage’s latest film, Dream Scenario, has just premiered at Toronto’s International Film Festival (TIFF).