The Possible Conspiracy Behind Nicolas Cage's Stolen Comic
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Nicolas Cage's wild spending has spelled money trouble for him in the past. We've previously had fun breaking down some of his nuttier purchases, from castles to dinosaur skulls. But one of his more sensible investments came in 1997, when he bought a copy of Action Comics No. 1.
Action Comics No. 1, as you may well know, is pretty much the most valuable comic book in the world. Not only does it mark the first appearance of Superman, which makes it so notable, but thanks to a contest inside it, copies are now extremely rare. One page in the book was black and white, and DC asked readers to color it in and mail it to them. That means if you were a kid in 1938 and bought the comic, there was a good chance you ripped the book up. The other side of that black and white page, incidentally, was the final page of the issue's Superman story.
There are only about 100 intact copies of Action Comics No. 1 left in existence. The copy Cage bought had set a record in 1992, when someone bought it for $82,500. Cage bought it for $150,000. In 2010, a different copy would end up fetching $1.5 million at auction, so smart move there, Cage.
But then in January 2000, someone stole it from him. Cage said he didn't know exactly when that happened. He'd placed the comic in a display frame, and then one day, he noticed the frame was empty. Luckily, he did have it insured, and he collected a payout on it.
A full decade later, the comic turned up in an abandoned storage locker. Why would anyone abandon the comic in a storage locker? No one has an answer for that. Cage called the comic's return "divine providence." Then, that November, this issue sold at auction for $2.1 million. News sources were unable to track what happened to the comic between its discovery in the locker and the auction, but they still concluded that at the auction, Cage was the seller.
Now, we're not saying that Cage faked the robbery as part of a publicity stunt/insurance fraud. But if we asked him, we bet he'd say he did, just because that makes for the best story.
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Top image: Nicolas Genin