We cornered Nic Cage's wizard in training, Jay Baruchel, to find out just how magical Jerry Bruckheimer's Sorcerer's Apprentice is going to be. Find out how the movie opens, and who would win a Gandalf Vs. Cage sorcery throw-down.
We caught up with Baruchel, doing press for She's Out Of My League and managed to squeeze out a few hilarious Sorcerer's Apprentice anecdotes focusing on Cage.
Can you talk about working on The Sorcerer's Apprentice, and what that was like?
It was a lot of fun. You become an actor because you played cops and robbers as a little kid, and I've had a few moments in my career where I'm basically getting paid money to play cops and robbers. In Tropic Thunder, I ran around with an M16 in my hand for 6 months and that was the fucking coolest thing ever. You get to show up every day and play army guy. And doing The Sorcerer was even more so, because I'm fighting monsters and shooting energy out of my hands [makes the Street Fighter Ryu Hadouken hand gesture]. It's just such a movie that I would see. It is what it is, man, it's a massive summer, event movie. It's a fuckin' ride and a half, that movie. I had plenty of opportunities to just geek out on that movie, I'm real psyched about it.
The interesting thing about new fantasy right now, like Harry Potter, is that they work very hard to make it seem really believable in urban settings. How did Sorcerer try to do that?
I think that the fact that they shot here [New York City] number one — there's nothing fake about it. It was important to all of us, and it was important to Nic [Cage] especially. He's the guy who grew up in California, but he says he's made more movies in New York than in California. He goes, "New York is his favorite place."... Everybody involved has a real affection for this city. The first line of stage direction in the script is:
The sun rises as another day begins, over the most magical city in the world.
Given the fact that we're actually shooting where we're shooting, that's how you keep it real. You shoot in Crown Heights for two months, it's real. [Laughs].
Who would win in a fight Nic Cage or Gandalf, as wizards?
Oh Cage, clearly Cage. Are you kidding me? Because he's fucking Cage, where have you been the last 10 years man? That's it.
What was it like working with Nic Cage?
It was awesome, it was amazing. The movie nerd in me was just blown away to be in conversation with this unique cadence, because he speaks in such a unique way, that I grew up hearing. I mean, my friends and I snuck into see Con Air when I was 15. Here I am on set with him, so that was crazy. He's just brilliant and as an actor he's incredibly generous and works his ass off. And is super polite, on time, and the most crazy professional guy I've ever worked with. More than anything I just love the conversations we had. We have the same taste in music. We like a lot of the same movies.
And also I liked doing my of him, and bothering him all day long. There was this one time where we shot a sequence on an elevated train platform, so we had to do this walk-through on the subway, with the MTA guys. And we were walking on the tracks and he turned to me and said:
[In a spot-on Nic Cage voice] "What is it about danger that is so compelling?" And I was like, that's amazing. I'd fuck with him the whole movie, I called him Coppola, the entire movie. I remember one time he was on the ground and he said, "Why do you insist on calling me Coppola?" and I said, "Because of that reaction right there, exactly."
No matter what, I smoked Cuban cigars with Nicolas Cage outside his trailer. That's the coolest thing ever. I was amazed.
Sorcerer's is out in July, check out the trailer. But until then you can see Jay in She's Out Of My League hit theaters March 12th.