How Nicolas Cage flipped $200 into $20,000 and then gave it to orphans

Nicolas Cage played a wide range of roles during his career, including a big-hearted cop who shares his lottery winning with a waitress, in “It Could Happen to You”, and an angel, in “City of Angels”.

But few people know that he played these roles in real life too – being both a giver and a guardian angel for orphans.

Recently, news emerged that Nicolas Cage flipped $200 into $20,000, while gambling, and then gave it to an orphanage.

In a very unique interview he gave to his longtime friend Marilyn Manson, the “Con Air” actor was asked if residing in Las Vegas means also gambling frequently as a habit. But the answer was surprising.

Nicolas Cage recalled how he entered a casino, decades ago with $200, multiplied it by 100, and then donated all the earnings to charity:

“The last time I gambled was about 30 years ago. I was in the Bahamas, and I walked into a casino and felt like I had my mojo with me, like nothing could go wrong. My game was roulette. I went in with $200, and I didn’t miss a number, so much so that even the lady spinning the wheel said, ‘Nothing sweeter than a repeater.’

In 20 minutes I turned $200 into $20,000, so I went and found an orphanage in the Bahamas, met all the kids and the headmistress, and said, ‘This is for you.’ I put the 20 grand in her hand, walked away, and never gambled again, because if I did, it would ruin the power of that moment.”

But this is not the only time Cage turned to charity. He is one of the most generous celebrities in the world. He donated $1 million to the New Orleans relief effort after Hurricane Katrina decimated the city 15 years ago.

Also, he donated $2 million to Amnesty International, to be used for some of around 300,000 children which are fighting in conflicts around the world.

The story with the casino earnings dates back in 1995, when chips were an important cash-in method in casinos. Nowadays you can play roulette everywhere due to the advancement of the technology. And there are many online casinos, like Jersey Casino, which don’t require physical presence.

And while all know Nicolas Cage from movies like “Face/Off”, “The Rock”, “National Treasure”, or “Lord of War”, he has a few Vegas-related movies, including “Next” (2007), where he played a Las Vegas magician who can see into the future.

He won his only Oscar and Golden Globe awards for his leading performance in “Leaving Las Vegas”, in 1996. Playing a deceived Hollywood screenwriter, Cage teams up with Elisabeth Shue’s character Sera. Shue also was an Oscar nominee for that role.


Before that, Cage received a Golden Globes nomination back in 1993 for another Vegas movie – the comedy “Honeymoon in Vegas”. He plays the role of Jack, who is about to marry Betsy (Sarah Jessica Parker) in Las Vegas, but Jack loses a big sum at poker. James Caan, Pat Morita, and the little Bruno Mars as Little Elvis star in the movie.

His greatest critical success was “Adaptation” (2002), which brought him three important nominations – Oscar, Golden Globes and BAFTA.

Some of the next movies in which we will hear and see Nicolas Cage are the animation “The Croods: A New Age”, which is the sequel of “The Croods” and it will go on the big screens these days, and “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent”, a never-seen-before comedy which will be launched next year and features Nic Cage as himself.

Another recent Nicolas Cage movie is “Color Out of Space”, which appeared this year. The horror mystery SF movie brings something new to these genres, and is already well received by the critics and the public. The cast includes Joely Richardson as well.

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