He's getting the requisite attention this weekend for his role as a hit man in "Bangkok Dangerous," but far less publicized is the deal he has cut with the tax man. Cage agreed to pay $660,000 plus unspecified interest to settle IRS claims that he improperly deducted personal expenses. Using his legal name Nicholas Coppola (he's the nephew of Francis Ford Coppola), the actor and his production company had earlier contested IRS claims that he wrongly wrote off $3.3 million in personal expenses from 2002 to 2004. That covered limos, meals, gifts, travel and his Gulfstream 1159A turbojet. At one point, Cage's business manager said the deductions were "customary in the entertainment industry." Here's more from Forbes, which has been closely tracking the case:
By Tax Court standards, the Cage complaints made for colorful reading, especially about his opulent lifestyle. He listed $185,000 in employment taxes for household help while the IRS disputed upward of $500,000 spent on his oft-photographed jet. In 2004, the year he starred in National Treasure, Cage listed his 2004 taxable income as $17 million. (The IRS thought it was $18.5 million.) After a seven-year absence, Cage returned this summer to the Forbes Celebrity 100 list, which measures money and fame. He was ranked No. 49, with estimated 12-month pay of $38 million.