In the late 1990s through the early 200s, it seemed that every movie Nicolas Cage touched turned to gold. He was one of the biggest stars in Hollywood and was in a number of notable films, including Face/Off, Gone In 60 Seconds, Adaptation., and Ghost Rider. In 2004, Disney fans around the world saw him play Benjamin Franklin Gates in the hit movie National Treasure. The movie was so successful that a sequel came out in 2007 and a third installment was promised.
Unfortunately, Cage had several films that were box office flops, including Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, Season of the Witch, and The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. That led to many of his film heading straight for Video on Demand. It was then that Cage began to see that production companies he had once had a close relationship with were beginning to turn their backs on him. One of those companies was Disney.
In a new interview with GQ Magazine, Cage spoke about the issues he had in trying to make National Treasure 3 happen:
Cage is matter-of-fact when he speaks about how he went from headlining blockbusters to going straight to VOD. “The phone stopped ringing,” he says. “It was like, ‘What do you mean we’re not doing National Treasure 3? It’s been 14 years. Why not?’ ” He would often get a circuitous answer, but he knew what the elephant in the room was. “Well, Sorcerer’s Apprentice didn’t work, and Ghost Rider didn’t really sell tickets. And Drive Angry, that just came and went.'”
Cage wants to keep going with the indies. “I enjoy making movies like Pig and Leaving Las Vegas more than I enjoy making movies like National Treasure,” he says. He waves away suggestions that National Treasure 3 is happening, after I mention that Jerry Bruckheimer told me they were developing something. “When I talk about fair-weather friends in Hollywood, I’m not talking about Jerry. I’m talking about Disney,” he says. “They’re like an ocean liner. Once they go in a certain direction, you’ve got to get a million tugboats to try to swivel it back around.”
Jerry Bruckheimer — the original producer on the first two films — has announced that a third film is in the works. There is also a National Treasure series in the works at Disney+. The series will star Lisette Alexis as a 20-something DREAMer who sets off on an exciting adventure to find a lost treasure and uncover her family’s secrets along the way. The series will also star Catherine Zeta-Jones.
There is no word on whether Cage will be in National Treasure 3 or if he will make a possible cameo in the National Treasure Disney+ series.