Nicolas Cage: It Sucks To Be Famous Right Now
Nicolas Cage has criticised the appetite for celebrity gossip and said "it sucks to be famous right now".
Speaking at the South By South West (SXSW) festival in Austin, Texas, the star recalled what had made him aspire to become an actor but complained about how Hollywood has changed.
"I started acting because I wanted to be James Dean. I saw him in Rebel Without a Cause, East of Eden. Nothing affected me - no rock song, no classical music - the way Dean affected in Eden. It blew my mind. I was like, 'That's what I want to do'.
"This was before everyone had a thing called a smartphone, and before the advent of the "celebutard" - just being famous for famous' sake. I'm not complaining, but it really sucks to be famous right now."
The Leaving Las Vegas star moaned about media intrusion into celebrities' private lives and how it can overshadow their professional work.
"Now even the art of film criticism ... now in the LA Times, the critic who reviewed Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans, incorporated how many homes I bought or sold into the review.
"What the hell does Lindsay Lohan's personal life have to do with her performance in The Canyons? It should always be about the work itself. What difference does it make if Bill Clinton had an affair - how does that affect his performance as President?
"In my opinion, I don't want to see personal aspects of someone's life eclipse the work itself," Cage said.
The Oscar winner was at the festival to promote his new film Joe which is about a former convict who tries to stay out of trouble.
The annual event has attracted numerous stars from the music, film and television world.
Girls creator and star Lena Dunham gave a keynote speech on Monday.
And Justin Bieber also made a surprise appearance and performed his song Boyfriend which he dedicated to his on-off girlfriend Selena Gomez, calling her "my baby".
Jay-Z and Kanye West are due to perform together on Wednesday.