There are moments in every generation that are remembered for a profound social impact that changed culture so dramatically, that nothing was ever the same again: The proliferation of the Internet; the formation of the Beatles; the invention of the wheel; Saved by the Bell’s reckoning with the early ‘90s rampant caffeine pill abuse problem.
For us, that moment came on Oct. 19, 2012, when it was announced that actor Nicolas Cage had signed on to star in a reboot of the apocalyptic fiction series Left Behind.
Since then, much of our staff has been solely dedicated—both personally and professionally—to reporting each available detail of the upcoming release. The journalistic pursuit has resulted in a substantial emotional investment, culminating in the very article you are reading.
Each passing moment is now one step closer to Oct. 3—the day that our dreams become a reality, two long years of around the clock investigative reporting will come to a close, and all of humanity will bear witness to the raw animal power of Nicolas Cage in his finest hour: The debut of Left Behind the movie.
Here is everything we know about the Left Behind remake so far:
The Plot Revolves Around Just a Small Portion of the 16-Volume Series of Novels.
The new movie will likely be taking a more measured approach than previous Revelation-themed epics that span the entire biblical end times account, stretching out over more than 1,000 years. As the Christian Post notes, an early post on the film’s website suggested that the new movie instead focuses on the moments directly after the rapture: “It will not cover everything that the first book includes, but will be more specifically concentrated on those first few hours and the chaos of the world in the wake of millions of people vanishing with no explanation.”
And, if the trailer is any indication, Nicolas Cage spends a lot of time on an airplane.
The Cast is a Multi-Talented Dream Team.
Name one other movie that stars an Olympic athlete, an American Idol winner, a TV heartthrob, the guy from The Blind Side, an Australian soap opera star, Caroline in the City and Nicolas Cage. You can’t.
That’s right, Nicolas Cage (Rayford Steele), Lea Thompson (Irene Steele), Chad Michael Murray (Buck Williams), Jordin Sparks (Shasta Carvell), Nicky Whelan (Hattie Durham), Quinton Aaron (Simon), and Lolo Jones (a woman named Lori), are all in the same movie.
High School Musical star Ashley Tisdale had originally also been cast as Chloe Steele, but bafflingly allowed the opportunity of a lifetime to go to someone else, Cassi Thomson, choosing instead to pursue other opportunities.
The Production Value Actually Looks Pretty Respectable.
Compare the following trailers:
2000’s Left Behind:
2014’s Left Behind
Cage does not lend his talents to anything less than absolute perfection.
A Shocking Number of Fans Have Submitted Homemade Promotional Posters (At Least One of Which Features a Raptured Abraham Lincoln).
Whoever runs the social media account for this film is a marketing genius that has managed to convince fans to create a steady stream of homemade promotional movie posters featuring varying degrees of quality and actual relevance to the film. It’s easily become one of the greatest fan pages on all of Facebook.
Nicolas Cage is Officially the Globe’s Best Actor.
FACT: Nearly one year to the day that he announced that he would be starring in Left Behind, Nicolas Cage took home an award, officially naming him the “Best Global Actor in Motion Pictures” at the Huading Awards in China.
FACT: Nicolas Cage was once the owner of a Bavarian Castle. By comparison, allegedly “great” actor Daniel Day-Lewis has owned zero castles. You do the math.
The Original Authors Really Liked the Movie … Eventually.
All it took was a little Cage magic to turn the book’s original authors into believers.
In February 2013, writer Tim LaHaye (who co-wrote the 16-part, 65-million-copy-selling novel series the films are based on with Jerry Jenkins) got a look at the script and told CP, “It’s probably the worst script I’ve ever read. And I’ve read scores of them. The plot line is nothing like the book. The only thing they retain are the names of the people, and maybe places. There is no redemptive value to this movie.”
As if making it his own personal mission, Cage converted the adamant critic with the power of a near supernatural-performance. After getting an early screening of the finished film, the duo of authors reportedly gave it “two enthusiastic thumbs up.” Jenkins in even added, “It was better than good.”
Never doubt the power of Cage.
The Movie’s Director is Possibly the Most Interesting Man in the World.
If there’s anyone that maintains a resume worthy of such a towering task as directing a Left Behind film, it’s former stunt coordinator Vic Armstrong.
Just how cool is Vic Armstrong? All of the following facts about him are awesomely true:
- He’s directed an action movie (Joshua Tree) starring Dolph Lundgren.
- His first name is “Vic”
- Armstrong was Harrison Ford’s stunt double in the Indiana Jones movies, jumping from a horse on to moving tank at one point.
He’s also stunt doubled as James Bond and Superman
- Just look at him
- He’s earned the respect of Rambo
That’s all we know for now, and that’s for the best.
Jesse Carey is a mainstay on the weekly RELEVANT Podcast and member of RELEVANT's executive board. He lives in Virginia Beach with his wife and two kids.