The Nicolas Cage redemption arc has taken an unlikely turn - he's currently a dark horse contender for an Oscar.

Cage starred in 'Pig' which has garnered some of the best reviews of the actor's storied career and discussed the role on a Variety podcast.

Over the course of the interview, Cage said that he would prefer to be referred to as a 'thespian' rather than an 'actor.'

"I really don't like the word actor because for me it always implies, 'Oh, he's a great actor, therefore he's a great liar, and (great at) lying,'" Cage said on the Variety Awards Circuit Podcast.

“So with the risk of sounding like a pretentious asshole, I like the word ‘thespian’ because thespian means you’re going into your heart, or you’re going into your imagination, or your memories or your dreams, and you’re bringing something back to communicate with the audience," the Oscar-winning actor said.

Cage, best known for his stretch of 90's action film classics such as 'Face/Off', 'The Rock', and 'Con Air' has found himself back in the spotlight for his latest film 'Pig', which became one of the sleeper critical hits of 2021.

Cage won the Academy Award for Best Actor in 1995's 'Leaving Las Vegas', with his turn as an alcoholic writer securing the statue for the cult icon.

The actor is famous for his over-the-top and scenery-chewing tendencies, and he discussed this stylistic choice on the podcast.

"Well, when they say that to me ("over the top) I say, ‘You tell me where the top is and I’ll tell you whether or not I’m over it.’”

"In painting, for example, you can get abstract, you can get photorealistic, you can get impressionistic, why not try that with film performance?”

Cage says he was looking to return to a more subtle style, and 'Pig' was the perfect film for the star.

Cage stars as Rob in the film, a lonely former chef who is fond of his pet pig.

When the pig is kidnapped, Rob goes on a journey to retrieve the pig and in the audience discover who Cage's character really is.

“I knew after a couple of flops that I had been marginalised in the studio system, and I wasn’t going to get invited by them,” he says. “I always knew that it would take a young filmmaker who would come back or remember some movies I had made and know that I might be right for his script and rediscover me."