Nicolas Cage Says He Turned Down ‘Shrek’ Role

Nicolas Cage said he turned down the lead role in DreamWorks’ original Shrek movie because he didn’t want to look like a ogre.

The prolific actor said he was originally approached to portray the big green monster when directors Andrew Adamson and Vicky Jenson were putting the flick together in 2001. Cage said it was his vanity that kept him from accepting the role.

“We were talking about Shrek and I just didn’t want to look like an ogre,” the 49-year-old Con Air star explained. “Maybe I should have done it looking back.”

The role of Shrek eventually ended up in the capable hands of Mike Myers. The franchise has enjoyed numerous sequels and quite a bit of box office success.

Nicolas Cage said he didn’t pass up a chance to work with DreamWorks when friend and studio chief Jeffrey Katzenberg approached him for The Croods.

Although his character in the upcoming animated feature isn’t much prettier than Shrek, Cage apparently learned his lesson about walking away from a potential hit.

“What really got me about Grug is his emotional transformation from an overprotective father who is surviving but not living and then he learns how to let go and live and I like that,” the actor stated. “That’s what appealed to me most. I like a movie that can make you laugh and make you cry.”

Nicolas Cage recently revealed that he is finished with the Ghost Rider franchise. If the studio plans to make another installment in the franchise, then producers will have do it without him.

Nicolas Cage

“I think the ship has sailed on [‘Ghost Rider’]. At least with me involved. Personally, I’m done. I’ve done what I had to do with that part. You never say never, but right now, today, I would say that I’m done,” Cage explained.

The Croods stars Nicolas Cage, Ryan Reynolds, Emma Stone, Catherine Keener, and Clark Duke. The film opens in theaters on March 22.

Are you a fan of Nicolas Cage? What do you think about the actor turning down the lead role in Shrek?