Nicolas Cage will no longer play Joe Exotic in a planned biopic because the Tiger King drama has been scrapped by Amazon.
The Oscar-winning actor, 57, confirmed the news in a recently interview with Variety, telling the publication that although he had read ‘excellent scripts’ for the project, too much time had passed for it to go ahead.
He told the publication: ‘We should clear the record. I read two excellent scripts, which I did think were excellent, but I think Amazon ultimately felt that it was material that had become past tense because it took so long for it come together.
Change of plan: Nicolas Cage will no longer play Joe Exotic in a planned biopic because the Tiger King drama has been scrapped by Amazon
‘They felt at one point that it was lightning in a bottle, but that point has since faded into the distance and it’s no longer relevant.’
However, while Amazon declined to comment to Variety about the future of the series, it has been suggested by sources that the series could be ‘shopped to other outlets.’
Though it remains unclear whether Nicolas would have any involvement.
Plans for the eight-part series, produced by Imagine and CBS Studios, were revealed in May last year, with the Face/Off star cast to play the disgraced zookeeper.
Too late: Nicolas , seen here in Con Air, explained: ‘I think Amazon ultimately felt that it was material that had become past tense because it took so long for it come together’
The news of the axe comes 16 months after the docuseries Tiger King first dropped on Netflix, which charted the rivalry between Joe and his nemesis, big cat activist Carole Baskin.
Elsewhere, a different Joe Erotic series is still going ahead.
On Sunday, Hedwig and the Angry Inch’s John Cameron Mitchell was spotted for the first time taking on the titular role of Peacock limited series, Joe Exotic.
The Texan-born 58-year-old rocked a blonde mullet wig, guy-liner, and a natural mustache in order to more authentically portray Joe Maldonado-Passage on the Brisbane, Australian set.
Filming: On Sunday, Hedwig and the Angry Inch’s John Cameron Mitchell (left) was spotted for the first time taking on the titular role of Peacock limited series, Joe Exotic
John and another actor playing Joe’s partner between 1986–2001 – Brian Rhyne – were shooting a nineties-era scene of a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the opening of Super Pets.
In real life, Maldonado-Passage (then known as Schreibvogel) bought Pet Safari in Arlington, TX with Rhyne, who died of complications from HIV in 2001.
After cutting the ribbon, Mitchell passionately packed on the PDA with his castmate in the show, which will also stream on NBC and USA Network.
The 58-year-old former roadside zookeeper eventually went on to marry Travis Maldonado (played by Nat Wolff) John Finlay (played by Sam Keeley) in a 2015 throuple wedding ceremony.
Justin Tipping directs the first four episodes of the series based on Robert Moor’s 2020 Wondery podcasts, Joe Exotic and Over My Dead Body.
Kate McKinnon produces and stars as Joe’s nemesis Carole Baskin alongside Dennis Quaid, Kyle MacLachlan, William Fichtner, Brian Van Holt, Dean Winters, Joel Marsh Garland, and Lex Mayson.
Source material: Justin Tipping directs the first four episodes of the series based on Robert Moor’s 2020 Wondery podcasts, Joe Exotic and Over My Dead Body
Elsewhere, Nicolas is set to work on his newest project, The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent’ in which he plays a cash-strapped version of himself who agrees to a paid appearance as a rich fan’s birthday bash amid a CIA sting operation.
Admitting he initially hesitated at the thought of portraying a distorted version of himself, he said: ‘It was absolutely terrifying and I’m one of those folks that thinks that within reason if it’s something that terrifies you or you are afraid of, as long as it doesn’t hurt you or someone else, that’s the very thing you should reach out towards.
‘I’d never done a meta movie about myself before. But [the character] really isn’t me. It’s Tom’s version of me, which is a kind of anxiety-ridden, completely hyperactive version of this person named Nicolas Cage or Nic Cage or Nicky Cage.’