It looks like actor-slash-"Purple Rain" karaoke legend Nicolas Cage loved Hereditary and Midsommar just as much as the rest of us—because now he wants to work with director Ari Aster on a new movie, IndieWire reports.
Cage sat down for an interview at Toronto International Film Festival to discuss his career, how he chooses his projects, and his extraordinarily varied artistic output lately, but he also wound up fawning over Aster, who has quickly cemented himself as one of the most interesting horror directors working today.
“Ari Aster, to me, is an event,” Cage said. “If you look at ‘Hereditary’ and ‘Midsommar,’ so much thought goes into them. They’re uniquely different, but you can tell that they come from the same mind. He’s a real student of film.” The actor recalled watching “Midsommar” in a theater following its release this summer, and recognized the influence of Ingmar Bergman’s eerie character studies on Aster’s sprawling tale of a Swedish cult and the young Americans drawn into its web.
“It was exciting,” Cage said. “I saw those Bergmanesque shots. I remember thinking, ‘This is like Bergman. Then I heard a podcast where he was talking about the closeups in ‘Persona,’ and I’d just gone through my Bergman kick, so I was like, well, this is really someone willing to explore and try new things in cinema.” Cage described Aster as “someone who has that auteur panache, like De Palma did back when he was doing films like ‘Sisters’ and ‘Phantom of the Paradise.’”
Aster is only a few months out of the release of Midsommar, and recently struck a deal to put out the film's massive director's cut with Apple TV, but whatever the director decides to do next, Nic Cage is apparently down. Cage only has one stipulation: no "torture porn."
"Horror is fine, you can be very creative with that. The thing I really don’t like is what they call 'torture porn,'" he told IndieWire. "If you’re just watching some woman get cut up, that’s really not for me. It needs to have a reason there, a story, that propels the characters, an emotion connected to it. I would probably have to pass on just gratuitous violence."
Of course, Aster's builds his dread from interpersonal relationships and his brilliant pacing, not just some cheap shots of gore, so Cage shouldn't have anything to worry about on that front. Besides, Aster supposedly wants to make a "zonky nightmare comedy" next, and if that doesn't just scream "Nic Cage starring role," what does? Please, in the name of all that is holy, make this collaboration happen. We need this immediately.