Nicolas Cage: Biography

Written by: Nicholas Bibilouri


Nicolas Kim Coppola, known professionally as Nicolas Cage, was born on January 7, 1964 in Long Beach California. He was born to choreographer Joy Volegsang and literature professor August Coppola, with two older brothers named Marc and Christopher. He's the nephew of the famous film director Francis Ford Coppola, and often visited him in San Francisco.


At age 15, Nicolas Coppola attended a summer class at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco, where he fell in love with acting. When he finished the class, Coppola dropped out of Beverly Hills High School to pursue a career in acting. He made his debut on television in 1981, where he changed his last name to "Cage". He did this for two reasons: (1) He wanted to separate his identity from his famous uncle, (2) He chose the name "Cage" as a tribute to famous comic-book superhero Luke Cage.
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First Movies

Nicolas Cage started his career with teenage comedies in the movie "Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)", and played a role as a punk rocker in "Valley Girl (1983)". His uncle gave him a role in the movie "Rumble Fish (1983)". Cage's first serious and dramatic role was in the movie "Birdy (1984)", followed by "Peggy Sue Got Married (1986)", "Raising Arizona (1987)", "Moonstruck (1987)", "Wild at Heart (1990)", "Vampire's Kiss (1992)" and "Honeymoon in Vegas (1992)".

Major Movies

Nicolas Cage has starred in many movies, but there are some that were better than others. His top 10 movies are listed below:

  1. Leaving Las Vegas (1995)
  2. The Rock (1996)
  3. Lord of War (2005)
  4. 8MM (1999)
  5. Face Off (1997)
  6. Con Air (1997)
  7. Gone in Sixty Seconds (2000)
  8. National Treasure (2004)
  9. Raising Arizona (1987)
  10. Knowing (2009)
Vampire's Kiss - Misfiling & the ABC's

Role Models

Nicolas Cage's biggest role model was his uncle, the famous film director Francis Ford Coppola. Cage frequently visited his uncle when he was young, and was inspired by his uncle's career. This led Cage into taking his first summer class at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco. When he became serious in acting, Cage's uncle helped him in his acting career by giving him a role in "Rumble Fish (1983)" and "The Cotton Club (1984)".


  • Academy Award for Best Actor (1996)
  • Golden Globe Award for Best Actor-Motion Picture-Drama (1996)
  • MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Duo (1997 and 1998)
  • National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actor (1996)
  • New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor (1995)
  • Toronto Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor (2002 and 2009)
  • National Board of Review Award for Best Actor (1995)
  • Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor (1995)
  • Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Drama Actor (1998 and 1999)

Interesting Facts

  • In the movie "Vampire's Kiss", Cage ate a live cockroach on set when his director only told him to eat a raw egg.
  • Cage was the fifth-youngest man to win an Academy Award for Best Actor
  • Nicolas Cage has owned a pet Octopus
  • Nicolas Cage is the only person outside the immediate Presley family to have ever been inside Elvis Presley's Graceland bedroom.
  • Cage bought a Bahamanian Island and a German Castle in 2006, which he was forced to sell three years later
  • Cage has purchased 22 cars in 2007 (9 of which were Rolls Royces)
  • Cage bought a nine-foot-tall, pyramid-shaped tomb in a New Orleans cemetery last year. It is assumed that this will be his final resting place.
  • Cage had two of his teeth surgically removed for his role in "Birdy" (1984)
  • Nicolas Cage is well-known for his edgy personality on and off set. This makes his acting even more emotional.