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Nicolas Cage: Before New Orleans arrest, a tattoo shop; after, bail by Dog the Bounty Hunter

April 17, 2011 | 12:14 pm

Events surrounding Nicolas Cage's arrest and release are rolling out in that only-in-Hollywood way -- which is rather delightful, given that events went down in New Orleans.

Nicolas Cage booking photo from his New Orleans arrest "Was he drunk again?" a French Quarter resident asked news station WGNO on Saturday. (More on that later.)

The Oscar winner, it seems, was bailed out by none other than reality-TV star Duane "Dog" Chapman -- that's right, "Dog the Bounty Hunter," whose wife, Beth, said Saturday on Twitter, "My guy just walked out of the jail ... 8 hours holy cow that's a lot of time toProcess one guy."

"I am a truly dedicated fan of Mr. Cage," the Dog said in a statement, "and will not be granting any interviews about my client as I wish to respect his privacy. I performed my duties as a bail bondsman and not in connection with our show. This is what I do for a living."

Evidence of Cage's where-do-I-live confusion was seen before his arrest, when the actor swung by a tattoo parlor, demanding ink and asking employees to call the police for him because he couldn't remember where he lived, said TMZ, which has surveillance video in which he appears to be arguing with friends and his wife, Alice Kim.

A cabbie had called 911 to report Cage's Rue Dumaine spat with Kim, during which he grabbed her by her upper arm, police said, and pulled her toward a residence he believed was theirs.

"Nicolas is one of our best clients and normally such a gentleman," the dispatcher for the cab company told Radar Online. "He is a big tipper and always very kind. His arrest is quite shocking to me because I like him a lot."

But back to "Was he drunk again?": On March 4, the actor got a police escort out of the upscale restaurant Stella!, the New Orleans Times-Picayune said -- and an eyewitness wrote about the incident for the May edition of GQ.

Cage had had "an altercation" that night at the restaurant with his wife and 5-year-old son, Kal-el, according to GQ editor Jim Nelson. The "Drive Angry" star stayed at the bar after his family went home (we assume Kim knew her own address), Nelson said, boisterously chatting up restaurant patrons and basically taking a page out of the Charlie Sheen playbook regarding pricey wines and general chaos. Though the night didn't end in an arrest, it also didn't end well:

Cage was at the doorway, trying to get past the manager dude, grabbing onto the walls, his arms extended out as if he were desperate to catch an existential football. His hand went through a panel in the door, shattering the glass. "You LOVE ME!" he shouted to the restaurant staff, who surely at one point did.

The police were called ("In New Orleans that usually means nothing happens," Nelson wrote. "But they turned up -- for a drunk-and-disorderly at Mardi Gras, no less"), and Cage, 47, was taken home.

Though no charges were filed back in March, the actor was charged Saturday with domestic abuse battery, disturbing the peace and public drunkenness related to Friday night's alleged events. A "stay away" order was waived, the Times-Picayune said; police found no evidence of injury on Kim's arm.

What would Superman think?

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-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Nicolas Cage's booking photo from April 17, 2011, in New Orleans. Credit: Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office / Associated Press

 

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