10 Things You Didn’t Know About Nicolas Cage
8. Early Life
Nicolas Kim Coppola was born on January 7, 1964, in Long Beach, California, to August Coppola and Joy Vogelsang. His father worked as a professor of literature while his mother was a dancer and choreographer, who also had two other sons, Marc and Christopher. Cage is the nephew of famed director Francis Ford Coppola and actress Talia Shire and is the cousin of Sofia Coppola, Robert Carmine, and Jason Schwartzman. When he decided to pursue acting, Nicolas changed his last name to Cage after the Marvel Comics superhero Luke Cage in order to avoid nepotism when auditioning for roles.
7. Becoming An Actor
Thanks to fame in his family, Cage had plans to be an actor from an early age and after attending Beverly Hills High School he went on to attend UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television. Although he changed his last name to avoid nepotism, he did have trouble getting started and thought he hit it big when he landed a part in 1982’s Fast Times at Ridgemont High; however, most of his scenes were cut. Afterwards, he got a job selling popcorn at the Fairfax Theater, but after reading lines with actors who were auditioning for his uncle’s film Rumble Fish, he landed himself a part. That role was followed by a part in Valley Girl which officially launched his career.