Nicolas Cage's Comic Book Collection
Nicolas Cage’s comic book collection was renowned as one of the most impressive celebrity-owned collections of comic books.
Nicolas Cage, born Nicolas Kim Coppola (1964-present) is an American actor, producer and director. The nephew of famous director Francis Ford Coppola, he has appeared in close to 60 films, notable highlights being Face/Off (1997) and Ghost Rider (2007).1
He received an Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance in Leaving Las Vegas (1995).
Comic book fan
Cage has been described as “a consummate collector of comic books”.
His lifelong passion has manifested itself in several ways. Although his real name is Nicholas Coppola, he took the name Cage from Marvel comic book hero Luke Cage. Along with staring in comic book adaptations such as Ghost Rider, he has written a comic book series along with his oldest son Weston entitled ‘Voodoo Child’ and his son with third wife Alice Kim Cage is named Kal-el, the name given to Superman on his home planet of Krypton.
In 2002 the actor sold his collection at a Heritage Auction Galleries sale. Amongst the collection were:
- A 1940 Detective #38 comic that featured the debut Batman's sidekick Robin, The Boy Wonder, which sold for $120,750.
- A 1940 All-Star Comic #3 introducing the Justice Society of America which sold for $126,500. It was the first comic book to introduce a super hero team, which included the Green Lantern, Hawkman, the Flash, Hourman, Dr. Fate, the Spectre, the Sandman, and the Atom.
The collection made a total of $1.6 million.
Comic book theft
In April 2011 a mint condition copy of Action Comics #1 featuring the first ever appearance of Superman was discovered in a storage locker in the San Fernando Valley. The comic was revealed to be the copy stolen from Cage’s Los Angeles home in 2000, and valued at $1 million.
"It is divine providence that the comic was found and I am hopeful that the heirloom will be returned to my family," said Cage. The other stolen comics are yet to be found.
Cage is believed to have purchased the issue Action Comics #1 whilst preparing for the role of Superman in director Tim Burton’s proposed film during the 1990s. The film was never made, and in 2000 the theft, in which two of his other more valuable comics were also stolen, persuaded Cage to sell his collection at auction.
Describing the theft, the actor said:
“Three of my best comics were robbed – Action One, Detective 27 and Detective 14.”
” “Those books today would be worth, I don’t know how much, more than the whole collection itself was at the time. It occurred to me that I didn’t want that in my house anymore because I didn’t want that sort of temptation for people to do that, so I sold everything.”"
A 9.0 graded copy of the comic, believed to be the same copy, was sold at auction by ComicConnect in November 2011 for a World Record price of $2.16 million.
Cage is noted as a passionate collector in several other areas, including classic cars. Amongst the many cars Cage has owned over the years are:
- A 1955 Jaguar D-Type (which was displayed in the billiard room of his Bel Air mansion)
- A 1989 Porsche Sportster
- A 1973 Triumph Spitfire
- A Lamborghini Miura SVJ, originally built for Prince Ali-Reza Pahlavi, the Shan of Iran and confiscated from the Imperial garage in the 1979 revolution. Cage bought the car in 1997 for $500,000 and kept it until 2004.
Cage also spent $276,000 on a dinosaur skull at auction in 2007 (after a heated bidding war with Leonardo DiCaprio).
The actor has also known to a fan of collecting autographs. Most notably, upon proposing to his future wife Patricia Arquette in the mid-1980s he was given a list of items to find by her with to prove his love. This included the signature of writer and legendary recluse J.D Salinger, which he indeed managed to find, although the pair were not to marry for a further eight years.
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