LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 18: Nicolas Cage attends the Los Angeles special screening of "The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent" at DGA Theater Complex on April 18, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Rodin Eckenroth/WireImage)
The Rock's Script Wasn't Enough To Satisfy Nicolas Cage
Movies - TV
Prior to "The Rock," Nicholas Cage had never acted in a straight-up action film, having played in comedies, crime dramas, and some legitimate tragedies (he won an Academy Award for his work in 1995's "Leaving Las Vegas"). Bay's film was an opportunity to expand his repertoire.
The irony of that is Cage didn't want it that way. In a recent interview, the director set the record straight on Cage's initial attitude toward "The Rock," and his disappointment thereof. According to Bay, the script contained very little in the way of levity, and the comedic moments were improvised by Cage on the day of shooting.
Bay pointed out that Cage was uncomfortable with being a comedic character noting, "There's nothing funny written in that script. Nothing. That's all improv. And Nic didn't want to do any of that." Evidently, Cage was expecting to play more of an archetypal "badass" character.
Cage worked very hard prior to filming to get into "action hero" shape. Most of his disappointment was born out of the fact that there were no scenes to show off his new physique, so Bay added the scene where he's playing the guitar naked as a way to placate Cage.